David Verweij

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FireFlies is a set of tangible 'pixels', each for one student in a high school classroom. Using a tablet, the teacher can colour the bottom half of these pixels individually or as a group. The students can rotate the outer shell of their pixel to change the colour of the top half. The pixels allow teachers and students to communicate with each other in a non-verbal, personal and persistent manner. The meaning of the colours are up to the classes to decide, but students can indicate things like 'do not disturb', or 'I have a question', and teacher can indicate 'silence please' or 'I want to see you' - without verbally disturbing other students. This project explored how offloading communication onto individual 'pixels' would help teachers in their everyday jobs.


For this project, I was responsible for the setup, execution and analysis of the research deployment in schools. Aside from debugging and slightly altering the tablet app, the prototype was built before my involvement.


  • Android app (Processing for Android - Java)


research paper, paper presentation video, short explainer video