Laboratory for New Media 9th Exhibition “Living with Monmo”

The contents of the Permanent Exhibition “Laboratory for New Media” are updated periodically to introduce cutting-edge information technology and the possibilities of expression utilizing such technology. The 9th installment introduces works from the “JST ERATO IGARASHI Design Interface Project,” which is advancing research on interfaces to make possible a variety of personal expression. This exhibition focuses specifically on research relating to everyday life, and features “Monmo,” which are imaginary creatures, like the dwarves of the Grimm's Fairy Tales, that assist us in our daily lives. These “Monmo” attach themselves to our home appliances, for example, and operate them according to our instructions. We will experience cutting-edge interfaces, which act as harbingers of future technology, together with these Monmo.


CRISTAL is an integrated remote control system for home appliances such as TV, speakers, lights, etc. There appliances appear in a table top display, and you can control them by touching them on the screen. You can also specify which movie or music to play using these devices.
Developers: Media Interaction Lab. Upper Austria University of Applied Science, Daisuke Sakamoto, Masahiko Inami / Contributors: Yui Kita, Ryoma Kawajiri, Daisuke Kobayashi


You can manipulate wind just like a magician by swinging a baton in front of AirSketcher. AirSketcher has camera following the baton and records its pathway. "Blow here, but here is not..." Let's sketch actually comfortable wind for you using the air baton.
Developers: Keita Watanabe, Youichi Kamiyama, Taku Monjo, Shota Matsuda, Masahiko Inami, Takeo Igarashi


What if rich contents on the Internet into your life? We have a lot of waiting time in everyday life. CastOven plays a video clip whose duration equals the cooking time. CastOven will realize a rich and fun future world where you meet interesting contents naturally.
Developers: Keita Watanabe, Shota Matsuda, Michiaki Yasumura, Masahiko Inami, Takeo Igarashi


How will it taste if the robots cook a meal? The timing of mixing the ingredients and adjusting condition of fire is very important for successful cooking. Make a cooking procedure by putting icons along timeline on the screen, and the robots will do the actual cooking for you.
Developers: Yuta Sugiura, Teruki Shinohara, Anusha Withana, Masayau Ogata, Daisuke Sakamoto, Masahiko Inami, Takeo Igarashi


We enjoy having a meal with a well-ordered dish arrangement. In the future, table setting and serving might be performed by robots. You take a photo of the arranged dishes, and a robot later arranges the dishes according to the photo. “Please set it like this photo.” Photobased communication would be useful for various household tasks.
Developers: Sunao Hashimoto, Andrei Ostanin, Masahiko Inami, Takeo Igarashi / Contributors: Hirofumi Nakano, Yu Kudo, Daiki Yamanaka, Youichi Kamiyama, Kojiro Kato


Don't you think that two fingers moving alternately looks like walking human? You can make the soccer robot walk and kick a ball intuitively by moving your fingers on a touch screen.
Developers: Yuta Sugiura, Gota Kakehi, Anusha Withana, Daisuke Sakamoto, Masahiko Inami, Takeo Igarashi / Contributor: Masayasu Ogata


It would be nice to have a switch for room lights near the door when you come home and near the bed when you sleep. You might want to have air conditioner start working when you turn on the light, and stop working when you leave. Push-pin makes such wishs come true. You only need to insert pins to slots to have customized home automation.
Developers: Charith Lasantha Fernando, Maki Sugimoto, Kentaro Fukuchi, Shengdong Zhao, Masahiko Inami, Takeo Igarashi


RoboJockey enables you to create various humanoid robot dance performance synchronized to music. You can control multiple humanoid robots at a time, not only one. Who knows? Perhaps you have a talent for choreographing humanoid robots.
Developers: Daisuke Sakamoto, Takumi Shirokura, Yuta Sugiura, Masahiko Inami, Takeo Igarashi / Contributors: Shuhei Tarashima, Shigeo Yoshida


TouchMe allows you to control a remote robot easily by your finger. When you touch the robot displayed on the screen, the actual robot moves. Any complicated manuals are not necessary.
Developers: Sunao Hashimoto, Akihiko Ishida, Masahiko Inami, Takeo Igarashi / Contributors: Keisuke Takahashi, Ryoma Kawajiri, Daiki Yamanaka, Youichi Kamiyama


You might have a specific way of folding a T-shirt. “Folding the sleeve first this way, then …” Foldy allows you to teach a robot how to fold a garment by performing simple drag-and-drop operations on the screen.
Developers: Yuta Sugiura, Daisuke Sakamoto, Tabare A. Gowon, Daiki Takahashi, Masahiko Inami, Takeo Igarashi

Magic Cards

Magic Cards are paper cards for magically directing robots. You can ask robots to clean and organize your room just by leaving the cards in a busy morning, and you will find your room cleaned and organized when you come home in the evening.
Developers: Shengdong Zhao, Koichi Nakamura, Kentaro Ishii, Takeo Igarashi / Contributors: Youichi Kamiyama

Term June 11 (Sat.), 2011 – December 27 (Tue.), 2011
Exhibitor JST ERATO IGARASHI Design Interface Project
The ERATO IGARASHI Design Interface Project is supported by the Japan Science and Technology Agency (JST) Basic Research Programs. This interface research group is directed by Prof. Takeo Igarashi, Department of Computer Science, Graduate School of Information Science and Technology, The University of Tokyo. The project aims to create new interfaces that allow general users to easily design their world based on their own sense and creativity.
IGARASHI Design Interface Project