About the Mixed Reality Laboratory (MRL)
The MRL was established in 1999, and is an interdisciplinary group exploring the potential of ubiquitous, mobile and interactive technologies to shape everyday life.
The MRL was at the forefront of establishing the £18.3M Horizon Digital Economy Institute and Horizon Centre for Doctoral Training, and has a current grant portfolio exceeding £10m, with multiple grants from the European Commission, EPSRC and other organisations and industry partners.
The laboratory is now home to over seventy academics, research associates and PhD students.
Key Aims and Expertise
The MRL creates interactive technologies to enhance everyday life. Our research is grounded in the field of Human-Computer Interaction. We combine an interdisciplinary approach (linking to the Social Sciences and Humanities) with an intra-disciplinary approach (with areas such as Distributed Systems, AI, Vision and Formal Methods) to enable an end-to-end methodology in which we both develop novel digital technologies, but also deploy and understand them 'in the wild'.
Our focus on everyday life extends beyond the workplace to encompass technologies for the home, the workplace and for culture and entertainment. Research activity has had direct impact on society through:
- public engagement – via staging a series of high profile public events that have directly engaged thousands of participants, whilst indirectly reaching millions more through associated national and international media coverage
- the development of new interfaces for entertainment
- research collaborations with art collectives and creative industries
- users and industrial beneficiaries of global human-computer interaction research who use it to advance their products
The MRL has collaborated with and received research funding from a variety of industrial partners including the BBC, Google, Microsoft Research, Unilever, BAE, GE Aviation, Nokia, BT, Sony, and Scottish Power.