Metropollutan is a wordplay on two words “Metropolitan” and “pollutant”, signifying the idea of a citizen in a city surrounded by pollution.

In the distant future, global warming have desertified Earth. Temperatures are always high and dust storms frequently hit urban cities, forcing its population to adapt. The garment is an imaginative reflection of the clothings that people in this dystopian future wear, referencing elements from desert wear and the clothings from Cyberpunk genre in Science Fiction.

The jumpsuit is the innermost layer of the garment, and is made of a comfortable and breathable fabric which helps the wearer feel cool. The sleeves are made broader to make it more cooling, which can also be buttoned off when a dust storm hits.

The poncho is the next layer, covering half the wearer’s body. This is inspired by the garments worn by desert dwellers. The poncho can be further extended to cover the wearer more if needed.

The outermost layer is the armour, which is used to protect the wearer and to perform functions such as detecting environmental changes, and responding using lights and motion. The armour pieces are also inspired by beetles in the way they are designed and the way they are segmented. For example, the arm pieces look like beetle legs while the shoulder pieces look like antennas. The armour also has an iridescent shine like beetles, which also coincides with cyberpunk aesthetics.

The garment is thus able to allow wearers, the Metropollutans, to adapt to the dusty yet urban environment.

The different parts and their functions:

The hood and the mask helps the wearer to protect their face against dust. When high pollution is detected, the motor moves and the mask comes up to cover the face.

The shoulder pieces are called the “Illumunators” which lights up into bright green light when there is high pollution so as to increase visibility.

The chest and neck piece houses the electronics and helps keep every other armour piece together.

The arm pieces help the wearer to visualise the environmental information in the form of light. The left arm piece responds to pollution changes, where in low pollution, it glows in blue and green, while in high pollution, it glows in pink and purple. The right arm piece responds to temperature changes, where in average temperature, it glows in blue and green, while in higher temperature, it glows in orange and red. These changes notify the wearer of the changes in environment, while also preparing them for the change in the garment pieces’ movements.

Finally, the belt allows the wearer to hold more things as it acts like a utility belt.

How it works

The garment uses Internet of Things (IoT) services to collect, send, and receive data to alter the state of the garment. Data is collected from Air Visuals, a weather data API. The data is sent to, which stores all the data. The stored data is then sent to microcontrollers, NodeMCU Amica, inside different parts of the garment, controlling different LED strips and servo motors.

As IoT data do not reflect the imagined world’s environment very well, the garment is also controlled by a switch on which changes the state of the garment. There are two states that works on my garment currently: high pollution and low pollution. On high pollution, the mask will move up to cover the wearer’s mouth, the Illuminator will switch on, and the arm piece colour will turn from blue/green to red/orange; vice versa for low pollution.

Photos of final state:

As I didn’t have the tools (and drive 🙁 ) to continue working on the garment, this is the final state of my work.

Current state: With a piece of armour

Additionally, I’ve worked on the mask and the electronics at home.

Mockups, Sketches:

To make up for the lack of finalised project, I used sketching and mockups to imagine the way the armour pieces look.

Video of Electronics / Interaction:


Role and Future Aspiration in Fashion Show

I would remain in the role I was assigned, doing the stage. I wish to do projection for the show, and had discussed with Shah before about it and we think it’s a good idea. I think we can project the quirks of the different garments, like for example, mine could be a desert world, while Fizah’s can be snakes.

The stage design will also include logistics like smoke machine placement, decorations, etc. This should tie in with the theme, but that’s undecided yet.

~muse Smol Updates (Not final)

I just want to collect my thoughts in a post. OSS is really a great way for me to not just update on my project but to just think as I write.



I’ve decided that the projector should be a ceiling lamp that projects the effect onto walls. After testing, I realised that the projector cannot be too close to the wall even though its short-medium throw. The projection is too small to create a decent effect.

I’ve tried to put the projector on the shelf at the back of my room and found it effective, although it still casts my head shadow. I offset the projection to the left of my desk and it works well.

This made me think that hanging it up will work better. And if it’s going to be a ceiling lamp, it should have some additional light for mood as well. I was thinking, in the best case scenario, the lamp can also drown the room into a specific coloured light based on creating the right mood also. For example, blue for calming down, red for active activities, etc.


For the sensor, I wish for it to be a motion detector, but I don’t have it with me so I’ll make do with infrared distance sensor to sense change in distance which suggests fidgeting (not ideal, I know).


For this project, I can’t make it as well as I wish it can, as there isn’t enough time and materials. As mentioned previously, I’ll only work on the visuals for “focus” mode, which is just window light effect, relaxing TV visuals, relaxing sounds. In addition to that, I’ll work on a using the sensor to alter LED colour (to indicate change in mood), TV visuals change, sound cue change (if possible).

For presentation, I’ll also create an interface and graphics to show how the controls and the lamp will look like.


So far I’ve been playing with TouchDesigner and learnt quite a bit.

For this project, there are a few parts:

  1. Window: the window light effect
    1. random opacity change
    2. random window effect (multiplied noise)
  2. Window colour: The time of day light colour
    1. controlled by time of day (for this project, I’ll let it run)
  3. LED mood lighting: To change the mood of the room, but I’ll only use a strip of LED to indicate for now.
  4. TV: Visuals to help stimulate the brain
  5. Distance sensor: To detect fidgeting (temporary solution)
    1. Once fidgeting is detected, a counter goes up. If fidgeting stop, counter goes down
    2. When counter reaches max, all activities within TouchDesigner will activate
    3. This includes: change of TV size, change of TV visuals*
  6. Projection case / Lamp case*: Won’t be having this as I don’t have the materials and workshop accessibility
  7. Selector*: Within TouchDesigner, I’ll create different assets and will allow for selection of different assets (in real life, adjusted through interface)
  8. Interface: This will be a graphic just to show how it will look like.

* Not feasible / will only be done when theres enough time!

Also, Pin Yi is working on something similar to mine in terms of the window light visuals, and he shared this reference which I think is very similar to mine. Although its quite the same, I wanna point out that my concept involves interactivity with the visuals which brings about immersion.

leslie nooteboom’s ‘komorebi’ lamp projector plays video looped light-patterns


So this OSS post ends here abruptly because I’ve moved on and continued (and finished!) the work instead of typing away. Kinda figured it out…? so I’ll just post this as post for my own thought I guess. You can see everything else in my presentation!

Tutorials (may be helpful to people reading this in the future!)

1. TD for projection mapping: This is useful if you want to know how to do projection mapping with TouchDesigner. The tutorial goes through Kantan Mapper in TD which IMO is quite buggy for Macs but useful nonetheless. Fy6aJM4U&t=179s

2. TD for different animation effects: This tutorial goes through different animation effects that can help you in learning how different nodes work and how they work together.

3. Intro to TD: Super long video but worth watching! Recommended by Amanda Lee! The video goes through the different basics of TD. It’s kinda like a crashcourse so after a while you may forget how certain parts work so it goes very well with more tutorials. mM1lCWtn6o&t=2915s

Comments about my project after presentation (reflection…?)

I realised there isn’t much to add as I’ve posted the process in the slides which is in the final project post. So I’ll just write my reflections.

I think it’s fruitful that I learnt a new software that I know I will continue using through the years. Kind of an excuse but I think the pandemic affected my productivity as I settle into the work from home environment. Halfway, I lost sight of the project’s meaning and just went with what I had at that moment and build it from there. But overall I’m quite content with the project.

I wish I can test it more because I think the feeling you get from the projection isn’t very strong. Best if I’m able to test if it can actually help in making you feel focused. I’m honestly more interested in the “reading” mode for this project which I’ll use an effect similar to window light inside a vehicle and a window into the outside of a moving train. That sounds like a nice environment for reading for me haha.

Anyways, yeah if we get to really exhibit it that’ll really be nice. If I’m able to create a cubicle for it. Sadly we can’t so I guess this project will never be fully realised unless I have the discipline to continue it after the pandemic. Will I? I don’t know. But that’s that. It’s been nice working on this and learning new things. Really thankful for Prof. Elke and Merlin for all the useful resources and lessons through the class! Especially the intro to VR which I never experience before, and Unreal Engine which may help in the future.

Ok bye!


Week 11 Interactive Environment Updates

For the final, I wish to do a smaller version, which only includes the environment for studying, and if possible, reading.

For this week, I’ve watched Touch Designer tutorials and this one taught me a lot:

Here’s some of the bunch of stuffs I made along with the tutorial that I think is helpful in my project:

Visualiser-like effect
Oil in water effect

I was using noise a lot to randomly generate effects.

Best results: noise bg + moving gradient + distortion on frame
another version which is not as great but can work out

In conclusion, I’ll continue working on this and refine it to look good.

Today’s consultation notes:

– brochure is useful in showcasing the work before people see it so it should be showcased during presentation / exhibition and can even be used as a brochure for selling my device if its a real product 😀

– like an app or something that can connect to the device, or link to heartrate, etc. However personally, I feel like I should have everything to be attached to the device directly to make it as simple as possible. I think an IR distance sensor (to detect restlessness / movement) and a gesture sensor will work well with the interface, together with IoT to detect time and temperature.

– studying colours and colour theory psychology and colour in mood lighting can be helpful

Concept & Some more research

Here’s my blabber on what I feel about the theme of my concept. This isn’t fully backed by my research, but most of the information are inference from those research.

In the information age, we are constantly bombarded with information and as such we need to find ways to sieve out information we need from all the other clunks that we should dismiss. This trains our mind to shorten our attention span over time as it is much more efficient to look through many sources of information rather than to focus just on one.

Personally, I’ve been almost diagnosed with ADHD when I was younger. I am always fidgety and easily distracted. Yes that could have been an excuse for me to justify being lazy, but I think my mind is kinda on overdrive sometimes, especially when I was younger. This, together with my thoughts on the information age, is (I feel) the reason why I need white noise to focus.

There is a need for more inflow of information to keep the task in check. This information usually has to come from some form of entertainment. A moving screen, some sounds from a podcast, music, or white noise. These are ideal (provided if they don’t feed new information that might interest the user to listen or watch) as they provide entertainment which are neither too little or too much information. Some of these information help give us brief distractions for us to satisfy the distraction-seeking part of the brain. Some of the ways we process such information are already so imbued in us that we just consume them subconsciously. Example, listening to music we are familiar with (or even unfamiliar with which we intend to just hear) allows us to consume the information automatically without us needing to put in energy. It occupies our information (or distraction)-seeking part of the brain and helps us to stay focused on the main task.

I would like to think of this as a form of multi-tasking. We are still able to process information on both sides, just that one is done by a more “automatic” or “subconscious” part of the brain.


According to , it is part of our biology that we get distracted. We get sudden sharp rise in attention at certain points, and then we have our in between distraction that we need. This is also related to our brain’s natural rhythm and I think there is also a co-relation with our circadian rhythm, like how certain times its easy to get in zone, while sometimes I’m just all fidgety.

To get in the zone, we need to be at least somewhat familiar with it as we need it to be done subconsciously. Getting into the zone is also emotional. One needs to be passionate about the subject.

Find the right environment. Figure out which types of environments are most conducive to finding your flow, and work them in whenever possible. I know, for example, that a coffee shop will help me start writing much more easily than sitting in an office. A good friend absolutely swears by airplanes. The notion of the environment being important applies equally in athletic endeavours: the home field advantage is well-known, but I’ve spoken to athletes who find that playing in away settings delivers them a huge mental advantage — they lose themselves in a feeling of “them against the entire stadium.” Different people need different things. Learn what they are for you.

This quote is directly taken from . I think this is where I come in. To create the best environment to work in.

More research suggests that technology isn’t the problem of distraction, but is just a good outlet:


Okay, so I think I have a pretty good idea on what I want to do for the Interactive Environment. It’s gonna be some kind of object that can transform a room. This object has sound, smell, and projections, both which are adjustable by the user. It should also be portable.

I want to immerse the user in the state of the ‘zone’. With that, I need some ideas of how people get in their zone. For me, it’s an environment that I can’t relax, but also not one that I am too stressed in. It’s like being in a cafe. But cafes are expensive. How do we build a cafe environment in an inexpensive way?

  • Immersion through sight, sound, smell, taste
    • Sight: projection on non-distracting scenery (eg. lo-fi hiphop to study to, waneella, relaxing videos, etc)
    • Smell: Coffee or whatever stimulating smells
    • Sound: Soundscape + their favourite tunes to study to
  • Occasional but mostly random breaks
    • Pleasant distracting content eg:
      • Sight: cartoon snippets / advertisements
      • Sound: comedy
      • Smell: ?


I was inspired by a few artists’ works. Here they are:

  • James Turrell – Wedgeworks (2011)

  • James Turrell – Magnatron Series  (2003)

  • Olafur Eliasson – Reimagine (2002)

  • Vadim Fishkin – Choose Your Day (2005)

  • Vadim Fishkin – A Speedy Day (2003)

  • panGenerator – Apparatum (2019)

I stumbled upon these videos that are meant for cats to watch:

Then it became these kind of videos:

I started diving into more videos and discovered that the chill playlists are right — they knew what were relaxing to watch.

I also found that aquariums and floaty things (AKA jellyfishes) are relaxing to watch too.

I also found bizarre but interesting vapourwave compilations like these that are filled with retro ads:

I just had to look up more

Theres also streams of live music content like this:

Some cool stuffs but I think is distracting:

I think seeing stuffs float around and moving landscapes are really working. Rather than the advertisements or human / animal movements.


So the idea is to have a portable projection + sound + smell machine that enables a user to be immersed in a space they are in. The projection is like a window to a relaxing visual world that one can focus in, while studying sound can be mixed with their favourite music playlist of their choice. The smell part I’m not sure yet but I’ll think about it. I’ll also think about whether to use videos or light streaks. In between, there will be random “commercial breaks” that allow the user to unwind. Everything must be controllable by the user.

The form will be taking inspiration from Apparatum. The effect will be similar to Vadim Fishkin’s Choose Your Day and Speedy Day. James Turrell’s aesthetics and immersive environments will also be considered.

If need be, I’ll create a room, or maybe setup in Truss Room so I will have more control. I can control the room’s brightness too!