Penn Ave Traffic Game

Made by Erin Fuller

Created: September 5th, 2018


My proposal is the creation of a simple game based on sensor data of the street below along with traffic data from google maps, as a way to foster movement in the workplace. I was originally inspired by the Finnish rock-climbing walls that use augmented reality to create games for climbers to play, the game that would be implemented in the Google Space would be based on the very simple game “Crazy Taxi”. This is an early 2000s flash web-based game, with the very simple instructions of:

    Drive as fast as possible. 

    Press the left and right arrow keys to steer, the up and down keys to control the speed, and the spacebar to jump.

Collage Representing User Experience
P0 collage.thumb

Because of the location and user experience, instead of using keys to play, Google employees will use their bodies. This allows an active break from work (and something funny to watch passively) to combat health conditions that arise from desk jobs in our modern era. Using motion sensing input devices, something like the Microsoft Kinect, the “player” will be digitally cast as a character on the windows that have a transparent OLED system on them. The player will psychically move left to right to move their character and jump to jump over the cars. The cars on Penn Ave, which will also be detected using a sensor, will be augmented as translucent cartoonized cars so that the user still can play the game while not being fully immersed in a digital world. When that section of Penn Avenue is empty of cars, Google will auto-populate the game based on data from Google Maps of the traffic speeds in Pittsburgh.

The installation will be interactive for those outside the bridge because the transparent OLED system will allow the game to be seen from the outside. Additionally, if the drivers catch on to what is happening, especially those who regularly drive on Penn, they can act as players in the game; by speeding up, slowing down or switching lanes, the drivers can make the game much tougher for the Google employee. (A drawback of this is it may cause reckless driving by those who catch on.)

Data Flow Digram
Screen shot 2018 09 05 at 2.58.35 pm.thumb

Bill of Materials:

1. Replacing windows OR overlaying with Transparent OLED Displays

2. Motion Sensors inside

3. Motion sensors outside

4. A computer to run this program

5. OPTIONAL - Speakers for sound effects to add to the value of the game

Share this Project


48-734 Reactive Spaces and Media Architecture

· 25 members

How can embedded computation change the way we experience our surroundings? This class will focus on the design and prototyping of reactive spaces. Over the course of several small projects and one...more