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The big day is here, Hug@ree was showcased at TEI2011 but first we had to contend with something completely unexpected. The normally sunny weather in Madeira turned its back on us and treated us to some cold wind and rain. Not the the perfect conditions to get people to go outside and hug our tree :/

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At the showcase room, the day started early and the room assigned to us at the exhibition space was quickly crowded with nice people setting up their very interesting projects. Hug@ree was in good company :) :) :) :) :)

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First we went about calibrating our multitouch display for the exhibition. Our improvised DI setup worked but turned out to be kind of fiddly to set up and a bit unstable in the tracking. In the end it worked out OK for demoing the concept but needs some work to be of any future use.

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At half past three, visitors started to arrive and we demoed the installation to them.

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At a certain point we received the vist of a local film crew, that was very interested in hearing about our project. They filmed it from every angle and were even captured in our surveillance camera :)

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We also received some illustrious visitors that were attending the conference, like UT Austin-Portugal Program’s Professor Sharon Strover and MIT’s Professor Hirosi Ishii:

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The rain made it hard for people to go outside to hug our tree, so we had to go out and do it ourselves, plus a very few brave palm tree huggers, including the student volunteer Ricardo and the The Chameleon Girl herself :) :)

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By the end of the showcase we didn’t have as many hugs as we expected on our unique Madeira palm tree, but we got some very interesting surprises, like a lightning triggering the sensors and getting captured on video or the quaint lights that the hotel lit up by nightfall:

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All in all it was a very rewarding experience. We met a lot of interesting people and got some really nice feedback. If you like, you can check the whole photo set of our adventures at TEI2011.

See you guys next year?

One thought on “Hug@ree at TEI Art Exploration session!

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