Dr Marcus Winter

Senior Lecturer
University of Brighton
525 Cockcroft Building
Brighton BN2 4GJ
United Kingdom

marcus.winter [at] brighton.ac.uk
+44 (0)1273 643512

ORCID orcid.org/0000-0001-6603-325X

Researcher at the Centre for Digital Media Cultures and senior lecturer in the School of Computing, Engineering and Mathematics. Exploring ubiquitous computing applications and interfaces for learning, cultural heritage and public engagement in projects funded by Nesta, AHRC, ACE, JISC, Innovate UK and the European Commission.

I am interested in enabling people to create content with and for emerging technologies. The background image shows me using a lightpen to create a 3D light sculpture in an interactive augmented reality display.

Current research

How can we attach digital information to physical objects and places in a way that is easily discoverable and encourages interaction? Today's applications usually rely on people using their smartphone to discover and display digital annotations in the physical environment. This has two key disadvantages. Firstly, it requires users to carry out several interaction steps before they have access to up-to-date information that could motivate their engagement. Secondly, when users add digital annotations it leaves no trace in the physical environment after the interaction took place. To address these problems, the research develops Social Object Labels that display digital annotations in-situ to motivate engagement and support interaction.

Ubiquitous annotation is a generic concept with a wide range of applications. While the research focuses in particular on social object annotation in museums, it is anticipated that the developed design guidelines will also be relevant for other contexts.

Previous projects

Ten Most Wanted: Game based crowdsourcing in Cultural Heritage

Ten Most Wanted develops and evaluates a game for the Museum of Design in Plastics (MoDiP). The project crowd-sources aspects of curatorial research in a playful way and integrates public contributions of new knowledge about collection items with curated content.

Funded by the Digital R&D Fund for the Arts, Ten Most Wanted addresses shared challenges across the arts sector such as sustaining audience engagement over longer periods, verifying and integrating user contributions with professionally curated content and acknowledging the copyright of contributors without blocking future re-use.

Badge for players and some objects the MoDiP would like to know more about. The name and concept of the project is inspired by the FBI’s Ten Most Wanted website. Curators put up ten objects at a time for the public to find out about.

SIMOLA: Situate Mobile Language Learning

The SIMOLA project takes the CloudBank concept to the European Union with its 23 official languages and more than 60 minority language communities.

Funded by the Lifelong Learning Programme, SIMOLA targets international students and migrant communities in the EU and researches ways to integrate informal situated learning with formal classroom-based education. The project develops the mobile and web-based knowledge sharing application Lingobee together with related teaching materials in seven languages. The system is evaluated in seven European countries plus Japan as associate project partner.

The Lingobee mobile app, developed by the SIMOLA project, supports situated language learners all over the world. The project is led by the Interactive Technologies Research Group at the University of Brighton and involves eight partner organisations from seven countries.

CloudBank: Mobile knowledge sharing for advanced language learners

The CloudBank project aims to build a mobile- and web-based crowd-sourced information system to help international students share their knowledge and understanding of the local language and culture. (Poster)

The system allows students to collect, annotate and tag interesting or intriguing language- and culture-related content found in everyday life, including text, images, audio recordings and web links. These content items are saved to an online repository, from where they can are shared with other language learners. (Funded under the JISC Information Environment Programme, Rapid innovation strand).

A scenario-based, user centred development approach involving focus groups and co-design sessions with international students helped to transform the initial design idea into a prototype ready for evaluation.

Authoring Games On the GO (AGOGO)

The AGOGO project is a collaboration between the University of Brighton and two local companies Locomatrix and Future Platforms. The aim of the project is to develop an authoring system that enables secondary school children to create their own location based games for Locomatrix' GPS gaming platform.

To support the process, we organised a workshop with developers and education professionals, carried out a literature review of location based games authoring, and evaluated Locomatrix' current player and authoring system, resulting in a set of design heuristics that take into account the abilities, needs and preferences of secondary school children and their teachers. (Funded by the Technology Strategy Board, Creative Industries Fast Track, Grant No. AL018H)

The evaluation of the authoring system and player involved the development of two location based games based on Grahan Greene's novel Brighton Rock for the CAL09 and EPDE09 conferences in Brighton called Fear on the Pier.

Augmented Reality In School Environments (ARISE)

The ARISE project seeks to leverage the affordances of augmented reality to develop new practices in the classroom, helping learners to explore scientific and cultural content in more engaging and effective ways. Based on the augmented reality display Spinnstube™, three educational applications were developed and evaluated between 2006 and 2008, each reflecting the evolving technological capabilities of the system and addressing different pedagogical approaches. Here's a poster.

Spinnstube AR displays can communicate with each other in realtime and support co-located as well as remote collaboration between learners in a shared workspace. The images below show the view of two students in Lithuania and Germany collaborating remotely to manipulate a virtual 3D object with a lightpen. Students see their own cursor actions as well as the remote cursor actions by their partner and can communicate via an audio link. (Funded under the European Commission’s Sixth Framework Programme, IST, Contract No: 027039)

Two students in Lithuania and Germany collaborating remotely in a shared workspace. The local cursor is visible as a red cube, the remote cursor a pale green ball. (Students can adjust the cursor shape dynamically to fit the sculpting task.) Requires shutter glasses for true 3D vision.

Micro projects

Backyard Brighton

The project creates a prototype mobile application based on the popular QueenSpark book Backyard Brighton, which features images and stories from people who lived in the 'slums' in central Brighton before they were demolished in the 1940s. Information in the book is geo-referenced and presented to users via mobile alerts in relevant locations. Here's a poster.

Funded by the Community University Partnership Programme (CUPP), the project lays the foundations for a long-term collaboration between QueenSpark Books, Brighton & Hove's community publisher, and the School of Computing, Engineering and Mathematics (CEM) at the University of Brighton.

DoxZ Editable Books

Instigated by Richard Griffiths, the DoxZ project aims to develop a one-stop publishing service enabling users to edit and personalise digital books online and then request small print runs of physical copies. The project bridges the void between authors of customisable content, users who produce personalised versions of that content and professional printers who can turn digital content into physical books.

Funded by the University of Brighton's Business Investment Fund, a prototype version of the service allows people with Aspergers Syndrome to personalise Marie Harder's book Illustrated Glimpses of Aspergers for Friends and Colleagues and request small runs of printed copies.

Crocodile Keyboard

Brighton-based serial-inventor David Baker asked us to develop an Android prototype of his novel Crocodile Keyboard. The keyboard, targeted at all kinds of portable devices but developed first for smartphones, has triangular keys arranged in a way that leaves a blank area around each key. According to the inventor, the blank space around each key acts like a targeting system and helps to prevent double hitting of keys.

Crocodile keyboard concept (left) and prototype implementation on Android (right). The keyboard is being developed commercially since 2010.


Winter, M. (2018). Visitor perspectives on commenting in museums. Museum Management and Curatorship, 33:5, 484-505, DOI: 10.1080/09647775.2018.1496354.

Winter, M., Brunswick, I. and Williams, D. (2018). Quantifying the attention potential of pervasive display placements. In Proceedings of the 2nd International Conference on Computer-Human Interaction Research and Applications, Volume 1, pp. 70 - 80. ISBN: 978-989-758-328-5. DOI:10.5220/0007223800700080.

Winter, M., Pemberton, L. and Griffiths, R. (2016). Direct and Mediated Interaction with Social Object Annotations in Museums. Digital Research in the Humanities and Arts Conference (DRHA 2016), 4-7 Sep 2016, Brighton, UK

Cacchione, A., Procter-Legg, E., Petersen, S.A. and Winter, M. (2015). A Proposal for an Integrated Evaluation Framework for Mobile Language Learning: Lessons Learned from SIMOLA - Situated Mobile Language Learning. Journal of Universal Computer Science JUCS, 21(10) pp. 1248-1268.

Winter, M., Gorman, M.J., Brunswick, I., Browne, D., Williams, D. and Kidney, F. (2015). Fail Better: Lessons Learned from a Formative Evaluation of Social Object Labels. 8th International Workshop on Personalized Access to Cultural Heritage, PATCH @ IUI 2015, March 29–April 1, 2015, Atlanta, USA.

Winter, M., Lambert, S., Blume, P. and Pemberton, L. (2014). Case Notes: Turning crowdsourced information into evidence trails for collection metadata. Proceedings of Digital Research in the Humanities and Arts (DRHA 2014), Greenwich, London, ISBN 978-1-291-97878-0, pp. 173-176.

Procter-Legg, E., Cacchione, A., Petersen, S.A. and Winter, M. (2014). Mobile language learners as social networkers. In D.G. Sampson, D. Ifenthaler, J. Michael Spector and P. Isaias (eds.), Digital Systems for Open Access to Formal and Informal Learning, pp. 121-137. Springer International Publishing.

Winter, M. (2014). Ad-hoc Registration and Configuration of Social Object Labels. Proceedings of the 3rd International Symposium on Pervasive Displays (PerDis 2014), Jun. 3-4, Copenhagen, Denmark.

Winter, M. (2014). Social Object Labels: Supporting Social Object Annotation with Small Pervasive Displays. Proceedings of the 2014 IEEE International Conference on Pervasive Computing and Communications (PerCom 2014), Mar. 24-28, Budapest, Hungary, pp. 489-494.

Winter, M., Lambert, S. and Blume, P. (2013). Ten Most Wanted: Hunting down missing information about cultural artefacts. Presentation at UK Museums on the Web 2013: Power to the people (UKMW13), Nov. 15, Tate Modern, London.

Winter, M. (2013). Inch-scale Interactive Displays for Social Object Annotation. Adjunct Proceedings of the 2013 ACM International Joint Conference on Pervasive and Ubiquitous Computing (UbiComp 2013), Sep. 8-12, Zurich, pp. 183-186.

Winter, M. (2013). Artwork-centred sociality in museums and galleries. Poster and Demo at iSay international workshop series: Visitor-Generated Content in Heritage Institutions, Leicester, 31 January – 1 February 2013

Winter, M. (2012). Situated mobile language learning. 1st Workshop of the Maseltov project. Mobile services for immigrant people: learning, information, and community building for employment and integration. Universidad Oberta de Catalunya, Barcelona, Spain, April 26-27, 2012.

Pemberton, L. and Winter, M. (2012). Lingobee: A mobile app for in-situ Language Learning. Proceedings of the IADIS International Conference on Mobile Learning, Berlin, Germany, March 11-13, 2012. pp. 383-384.

Pemberton, L. and Winter, M. (2011). Mobile Knowledge Sharing for Language Learners. Poster presentation at the 10th European Conference on e-Learning ECEL-2011, Brighton, UK, 10-11 November 2011.

Pemberton, L. and Winter, M. (2011). SIMOLA: Helping Language Learners Bridge the Gap. Proceedings of the 4th International Conference on ICT for Language-Learning, Florence, Italy, 20 - 21 October 2011.

Pemberton, L., Winter, M. and Peterson, S.A. (2011). Learning from Formative Evaluation in Use: a Case Study of a Mobile Application for Language Learners. Proceedings of the 10th World Conference on Mobile and Contextual Learning, mLearn2011, Beijing, China, 18 - 21 October 2011, pp. 364-367.

Pemberton, L. and Winter, M. (2011). I saw this: bringing learned language into the classroom via mobile phones. Presentation at the Asian Conference on Language Learning ACLL2011, Osaka, Japan, June 10-12 2011.

Winter, M. and Pemberton, L. (2011). Unearthing Invisible Buildings: Device Focus and Device Sharing in a Collaborative Mobile Learning Activity. International Journal of Mobile and Blended Learning, 11(3), pp. 1-18

Pemberton, L., Winter, M. and Fallahkhair, S. (2010). Collaborative Mobile Knowledge Sharing for Language Learners. Journal of the Research Center for Educational Technology, RCETJ, 6 (1), pp. 144-148.

Pemberton, L., Winter, M. and Fallahkhair, S. (2009). A User Created Content Approach to Mobile Knowledge Sharing for Advanced Language Learners. Proceedings of mLearn 2009, Orlando, Florida, pp. 184-187.

Krauss, M., Riege, K., Pemberton, L. and Winter, M. (2009). Remote Hands-on Experience: Distributed Collaboration with Augmented Reality. In: Learning in the Synergy of Multiple Disciplines, Proceedings of the EC-TEL 2009, Nice, France, Vol. 5794, Berlin/Heidelberg: Springer.

Pemberton, L. and Winter, M. (2009) Collaborative Augmented Reality in Schools. Proceedings of 8th International Conference on Computer Supported Collaborative Learning, CSCL2009, Rhodes, Greece, pp. 109-111.

Winter, M. and Pemberton, L. (2009) Promise and Reality of Augmented Reality in Schools: Developing and Evaluating Educational Use Cases. International Conference on Computer Assisted Learning, CAL09, Brighton, UK. Poster Presentation.


I currently teach Web Development and Mobile Application Development at undergraduate and postgraduate levels. I am also external examiner at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) in Trondheim, Norway.

Other Activities

Outside university I develop vector graphics animation tools and run an online community where children proudly create and share their own animation since 2002.