Interaction Design

Adam Henriksson is a Swedish designer currently based in Umeå, Sweden. He holds a BFA in Industrial Design and is pursuing a MFA of Interaction Design at Umeå Institute of Design. His work stretches across different interactive media with the consistent theme of collaborative efforts.

+46 (0)722 006550
adam dot henriksson at gmail dot com

Alternative Search

An ongoing thesis project exploring alternative ways of navigating the Web.

The Internet has been an ever growing resource of information since its commercialisation in the 90's. Gradually, search engines became integral to the experience of navigating this immaterial information systems. Some of the largest actors supply services based on mapping, analysing and indexing data. So far the technological development has been predictive, but the impact it has on its users is profound: Its presence is facilitating the democratisation of information influencing culture, politics and social infrastructure in ways no other digital innovation has before.

So far most search engines have focused on efficiently generating search results. Yet, there is much to be explored in the way users interact with the applications and relate to the content. Users are commonly unique, with complex preferences, motives and expectations. Not only is it important to be sensitive to these differences, but to be accommodating for the extremes. Enhancing the search engine does not only rely on technological development, but to explore potential user experiences in broader perspectives - which not only gratifies the needs for information, but support a diversity of journeys.

Adaptive Relaxation Space

An ambient experience concept exploring adaptive spaces, soundscapes and paced lighting to reduce work-related stress.

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The space designed to offer the user control over their surroundings in order to alleviate stress and promote mindfulness. It becomes responsive to the presence of people, generating intimate spaces that support relaxation.

The position of one or multiple users trigger moving partitions, light and a generative soundscape to allow for an explorative configuration of the space.

The prototype was built and tested with a diverse group of experts in Philips' Experience Lab at High Tech Campus in the Netherlands.

Tackling work-related stress: adaptive relaxation space

Philips Design

Adam Henriksson
Federico Trevia


OI! is a collection of connected artifacts abstracting data from personal bank accounts.

oi_01 oi_02 oi_03

Banks are experiencing a revolution. Not too long ago customers had to go to a local office to deal all financial tasks. Today, all active type of communication with the bank is initiated by the customer, leaving full responsibility with little social contact with a professional. It creates a “service provider - client setup” where the customer is there for the bank instead of the other way around. For some, dealing with financial issues does not come naturally leading to a mis- or nonuse of banking services.

Common passive communications are monthly, quarterly or yearly status reports. It is a standard model with limited possibility for the customer to influence the frequency and the content. Is there a way to support the individual to actively set up a service where events are seamless, appropriate and contains desired content?

OI! is a collection of connected artifacts abstracting data from personal bank accounts and thus supporting individuals to have a better understanding of their current financial status.

Each artifact uses a unique sensorial output running recipes set up and customized by its owner. These recipes allow both binary alarms and reminders and quantitative data as inputs. These spimes can live in public space because of the personalized encryption of its user, author, director.

"If daily purchases surpasses € 50 — Release the scent."

"As final payment comes closer — Swing the arm from left to right with higher frequency."

"As account balance is declining — Drop the line."

Itaú Unibanco

Elevated Coffee Machine

An experiment in evoking reaction around every day objects with extraordinary behavior.

The Elevated Coffee Machine is an experiment in social behavior around a coffee machine. It is an every day object used for one thing, and one thing only, serve coffee. This day it got the added behavior of playing elevator music after someone fills up their coffee. The behavior is added to evoke an emotion.

The experiment was prototyped with a computer placed inside the coffee machine, which analysed the sound level. Once the machine starts to pour the coffee it randomly picks a song and plays for about a minute. Two cameras was hidden to capture the reaction of the thirsty test subject. The experiment was developed and tested in a day together with other sounds like a dialup modem, spaceship and whispering voices.

Adam Henriksson
Harry Clayton Cook

Touch / Shapes

Processing has long been one of the fastest ways to sketch ideas through code. It now runs just as easily on the Android mobile platform.

The free Android SDK allows to push applications to an emulator or a device, but while is not a walk in the park, due of issues with compatibility, it works well when set up.

Touch / Shapes is a breif exploration of multitouch made while collecting information and writing a tutorial for installing, troubleshooting and using Processing for Android. The first example enables up to ten touch events. Each event is display with a different coloured ellipse and the size matching the pressure. This is a basis for any simple multitouch application.

The second example uses two to five touch events to draw geometric shapes. The idea is not to draw a lines from each finger and fill the object, but to create a logic to analyse the touch events and draw the correct shape in a calculated size, position and orientation.

Processing Android Tutorial

One Bit

One Bit is an exploration of making things talk over standardised protocols.

The setup was restricted to one sensing input device and one controlling output device. The connection was limited to using an ethernet cable and maximum specification of one bit.

The sensing device has a jack plug input and analyses sound through 7 bands. The actuating device reads the signal and powers a small DC motor. This creates a varying airstream that allows a lightweight plastic ball travel up and down on the rhythm of the music. Both devices were controlled by an Arduino communicating over a strict protocol. Due to this standardisation different input and output devices can be mixed with each other.

Adam Henriksson
Jules Fennis

Random Motion Machine

The Random Motion Machine uses a physical system, the stacked pendulums, that exhibits rich dynamic behaviour

Inspired by Picasso's light paintings, the Random Motion Machine is a brief exploration of motion resulting in the artifact and a set of photographies captured during one session. The machine consists of a platform that travels over a slider driven by a stepper motor. The connected arms, the pendulums, are joint through bearings all creating random motion. Different combinations of orientation, speed, movement intervals and length of arms creates different expression of the light.

Less predictable patterns were made by orienting the machine towards the ceiling, due to being less restricted by gravity. This combined with a few different sized pendulums and short movement intervals resulted in exposures reminiscent of lightning from the sky.

Adam Henriksson
Kilian Kreiser


Hackney is an interactive video installation which compels people to communicate and work together to compose a complete face.

Inspired by David Hockney's polaroid collages, Hackney uses video to create a collage of facial parts. A slight movement from one person needs to be reciprocated and adjusted by the other two, which leads to interesting unspoken dynamics between the participating audience. It is an exploration of live video aesthetics and social dynamics.

Adam Henriksson
Miguel Peres
Shivanjali Tomar


Kaliber is an open source software built to handle data between computers and devices.

kaliber_01 kaliber_02

The project, originally with the working title OpenMove, is an initiative born out of curiosity to simplify the process of prototyping with input devices for non programmers in the spirit of the Open Source Movement.

The application is a stand alone middleware, communicating through the OSC protocol and can be used together with different programming environments. Since it is run in parallel to a sketch it can toggled on/off, redirect and modify values without having to restart. This feature is beneficial for 'live prototyping'.

Kaliber supports a wide variety of input devices. JInput API is the main HID (Human Interface Device) library and enables hardware such as 3Dconnexion Spacenavigators, Playstation Dualshock 3 Sixaxis, Xbox 360 Gamepads for PC (USB), Dance Dance pads (USB), Arduino Leonardos, keyboards and mouse-like devices. The Playstation Move relies on Thomas Perl's PS Move API to receive data from the motion controller, but also to output events such as the rumble and colour of its LED. These devices are different, easy to buy and contains the familiar types of the components used for physical computing.

The application was released for a week of tutoring "Experience Prototyping - Game controllers and Input Devices" with the Interaction Design Program at Umeå Institute of Design. The participants gained skills and experiences building prototypes of objects, installations and games using Kaliber. The feedback was gathered for future research and improvements within the field of Human Interface Devices and the software that allows them to be implemented into prototypes.



Adam Henriksson
Jules Fennis

Edgar Rice Soirée

The game originally known as "Awkward Tarzan Grinding Game".

Four players navigate a jungle of 20 hanging PlayStation Move controllers. Each player is assigned a colour. Players need to hold controllers of their colour by pressing a button. As long as you have two controllers pressed, you are safe. If no controllers of your colour are pressed, you are eliminated instantly. If only one controller of your colour is pressed, you begin to lose life energy quickly. Grab a second controller, quickly, before all your energy drains and you are eliminated. Colours move around the jungle and the pace speeds up as the game progresses. "Tarzan" around the space, and use your body to block the others' paths. Awkward body contact encouraged.

This competitive PlayStation Move game was conceived and developed in 48 hours during the Nordic Game Jam 2012 in Copenhagen, Denmark. Since then it has been exhibited at Spilbar 14 and the Come Out & Play festival in New York.

2012-01-29 Nordic Game Jam 2012
2013-04-18 Spilbar 14
2013-07-12 Come Out & Play Festival NYC
2013-09-05 Indiecade

Thomas' Edgar Rice Soirée
Thomas' Spilbar 14

Killscreen - Gaming's Newest Grind
Venus Patrol - Off the Vine: A closer look at awkward grinding game Edgar Rice Frotteur
Kotaku - This Game Involves 20 PlayStation Moves And Pretending You're Tarzan
Joystiq - IndieCade 2013's Night Games are inventive, goofy fun

Adam Henriksson
Douglas Wilson
Thomas Perl
David Kanaga


Ninja is a digital version of a playground game where the objective is taking turns swiping at the opponents' hands to eliminate them.

A game start off by all players standing in a circle, each taking turns on striking their opponents. A strike must be a swiping movement ending in a freezing pose. Other players are only allowed to dodge an attack by moving their arms, also ending in a freezing pose. Once hit, the player is out. The only player left is the winner.

In this digital prototype each player wears a set of gloves containing motion controllers. The sensors acts as impartial judges allowing for a fair game. The game's turned based rule still applies, but instead of a logical rotation a randoml player is selected and receives haptic feedback through the gloves. This way, no player can anticipate who is going to make the next move. The game allows the striker one single move, while the other can slowly dodge the attacks.

Adam Henriksson
Jules Fennis

Brandenburg Concertos

A typographic exploration visualizes sound and music on a vinyl record sleeve.

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Johann Sebastian Bach's Brandenburg Concertos are widely regarded as some of the best orchestral compositions of the Baroque era.

This typographic exploration visualizes sound and music on a vinyl record sleeve. It is an exercise of minimalist esthetics with restrictions to use only typography, the Univers font, and a composition of eight horizontal lines placed in a grid. The idea behind the sleeve was to frame the text creating weight and shape as an effect of negative space.

Cap&Design - Linje vs Musik


Pockit is a portable motion controller running no graphic games. Instead the users focus on each other, the environment and requisites.

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Today we get introduced to playing with friends and family at a young age. Playground games or "folk games" can be played for competition or entertainment, but it is the social engagement that sets them apart from a majortity of video games today. However, terms like 'social gaming' or 'gamification' tends to be widely used by developers for both mobile and web based platform. The common aspects are to share, compare and impress your peers, but the feedback and recogniction can be classified as rather limited or shallow 'stroke'.

Game mechanics can create immersive experiences, raise questions and gives people incentives for actions. Players get put into a role where they can safely explore tasks being given. As "King of the Hill" one is allowed to move someone down a slope, while such behavior is unacceptable in any another context. Time and complexity are two relevant factor in gameplay. Many new 'social games' are long or endless, but history shows that some of the more long lasting games has been short and spontaneous. Rock-paper-sciccors is a prime example of a short and 'portable game' played for countless of reasons. Social contexts are complex, but carries influencial factors for how a game is played. Rules can change drastically dependent on location, occation and the people engaging in the activity. This way, one can also look at multiplayer games as social experiments.

Pockit is a portable motion controller. It measures parameters like motion and location, and gives feedback through vibration, sound and light. The controller is an extention of the player thus enabling play everywhere. A hive mind community can log locations and create hot spots, much like gaming arcades in the 80s.

The controller shares qualities with today's couch friendly controllers, while still being portable as mobile products carried in pockets or bags today. What sets it apart is the resistant rubber-like 'skin' wrapping around the components. The same material forms a dynamic joint, containing two bend sensors, letting the player navigate a text based interface with a slight twist. When turned off, the controller can be folded to fit the pocket. Inputs are based on motion measured by an accelerometer, a gyroscope and a magnetometer (compass) mixed with a GPS logging movement, orientation and location. The device outputs haptic feedback through a rumble motion, auditive feedback through a microphone and simple visual ques through the screen and skin.

The games are closely related to children’s play and sports, but its digital format allows the device to acts as an unbiased referee. It encourages everyone to be physical and have a reason to break norms. Since no graphics are used, games are simple and intuitive, enabling player rotations and a more active role for spectators.

FastCoDesign - Simple Genius: Pockit, A Game Console With No Screen And No Graphics
TheMethodCase - A Social Active Game Experience
Tuvie - Pockit Revolutionary Gaming Console Concept Enhances Social Engagement
Design Buzz - Pockit portable motion controller turns gaming into social activity
Umeå Institute of Design - Degree Work of the Year

Beat the Universe

Take control of an animal at the chaotic borderland between the expanding universe and Happy Space.

Beat The Universe was created by team Rocklobster in less than 48 hours at the Nordic Game Jam 2011. It made it to the finals along with great games like Tikkiit and Johann Sebastian Joust.

All the planets in Happy Space are inhabited by singing animals. You control one of these animals. The objective on each planet is to determine which one of the local animals' humming songs is the most harmonic match to the player controlled animal's song. When a beat box ensemble is gathered - one member from each of the four planets - the player will be evaluated on how the final band fit together.

Nordic Game Jam
Download for Mac and PC

Adam Henriksson
Mathias Hansen
Bjørn Højlund Rasmussen
Anders Christensen
Jesper Krogh Kristiansen
Natalia Mekras
Morten Keblovszki