2021
London

/ Product Design
/ Interaction Design
/ Sound & Light

Communication without words through the play of light and city sounds


Lumio is a light-sensitive communication device to highlight the importance of empathy and openness during our interactions with people across cultures and the world.




Designing Lumio
What would communication without words look like between people from different backgrounds?

Today, we are traveling around, sharing our cultures, and exchanging knowledge, yet communicating oneself is still not an easy act. Lumio stands at the intersection between people from different backgrounds, languages, and cultures- connecting people through the light and the sound of cities.

The light initiated by people in conversation takes the form of unspoken words, and translated into sound of different neighborhoods of one’s hometown.






Process
Designing Lumio was my first physical computing experience. I worked with Arduino for coding and light interaction, and MAXMSP for audio output.

For design, I wanted to tackle a question where I am asked often ‘Where are you from?’. A simple city or country as a response doesn’t articulate or communicate the experience of our backgrounds. Therefore, I integrated the city sounds through which the users can share their cities in darkness through light without spoken words.






Acknowledgments
Many thanks to the tutors Charlotte Slingsby and Shayan Sharifi for their pathfinding feedbacks, and Marco Da Re for product filming.