Archive: Announcements

Wending Our Way into Europe

We are very pleased to be announced as one of the first companies to secure phase-1 grant funding from the SME Instrument of the EC’s new Horizon 2020 scheme, which supports the formation of the business and development plans of innovative SMEs.

Mudlark is among the 155 small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) selected from 2,662 proposals from 21 countries. We have won funding to do a business feasibility study for the successor to our travel game Chromaroma, in a proposal entitled Off the Rails.

Chromaroma started as an experiment in ambient gaming – using Transport for London’s iconic Oyster smartcard system to return people’s travel data to them in the form of gameplays.

Chromaroma visualisation

The visualisation mode inside our Chromaroma game.

Since its 2010 launch, Chromaroma has had thousands of players, attracting global interest from transport systems and operators. Mudlark has consequently grown a unique expertise not only in data-driven game design but also in transport policy, behaviour change, sustainable travel and mobility technology.

We are now calling the Off the Rails product “Wend”, reflecting its multi-modal ambitions to give players back useful, playable information across all their transport modes as they wend their ways through the world. Unlike Chromaroma, it will not depend on a ticketing infrastructure, using mobile devices instead of smartcards.

Half The Sky Mobile Games finalists for INDEX: Award

We are delighted to announce that our suite of mobile games for Half the Sky Movement/Games for Change have been selected as finalists for the 2013 INDEX: Award.



A film about the development of Half the Sky.

INDEX: Award is a prestigious biennial design award, set up in 2005 by INDEX: Design To Improve Life to acknowledge and reward companies developing creative solutions to global and local challenges. Spread across five different categories - Body, Home, Work, Play, and Community – previous winners include groundbreaking social housing projects, One Laptop Per Child, an airbag for cyclists and the Tesla roadster.

Mudlark worked tirelessly with  to design the three games - Worm Attack9 Minutes and Family Values - in a way which would have a genuinely positive effect in India and East Africa, especially amongst women and girls. We are particularly pleased our work, blending social impact content with compelling gameplay, has been recognised in the Play & Learning category.

Downloaded over 25,000 times to date, the Half The Sky Movement games were designed for target audiences on non-smart, low-end, widely-available mobile handsets and built in J2ME – a platform for older “feature phones”, still dominant in the developing world.

Winners of the INDEX: Awards will be announced on 29th August at the home of Hamlet, Kronborg Castle, Helsingør (Elsinore), Denmark before a public exhibition opens across Copenhagen on the 30th August.

We will be sporting our black ties and crossed fingers.

Mudlark + The City of Steel

We are very excited to announce that we’ve moved to Sheffield. A city with a long history of creativity, industry, digital culture and independent spirit. It’s a city with a personality and warmth.

For the last three years, we have been based in an old Victorian mill in Derby. It was a wonderful place — where we dreamt up Such Tweet Sorrow, Chromaroma, Derby 2061 and many other gems — but the time has come to move on, to get out of the romance.

So, farewell old mill. Farewell to your blazing summer sun and your blue-fingered winters. Farewell to your leaking roof and the smell of hops from the brewery below. Farewell to the dojo, upholsterers and men who make tiny things for airplanes. Farewell to Derby.

Hello, then, to our lovely new base in Sheffield. Hello to the Site Gallery, where Mudlark now nests. Hello to Other People To Talk To, hello to Andrew Motion’s poetry, hello to shimmering silver balls. Hello to a new lease of life.

Hello to you, particularly.

And if you’re in town, drop in and we’ll say hello to you. We’re here to meet people and businesses with different ideas, fresh approaches, new horizons — and hopefully bring a bit of Mudlark to the city. We are always around, pop in and say hello.

See you soon,
Mudlark of Sheffield.

Feed The Birds

We publicly launched Mudlark on Friday 22nd May 2009 by hosting Post Digital – a day of talking about how digital things and actions manifest in the physical world – at our home at Fazeley Studios in Birmingham.

Since Mudlark takes its name from a bird, we gave everyone a box of bird seed to take home and put on bird tables/window boxes/children’s shoulders. We want to share this with everyone, so we made a little game (basically by adding the point system below to something completely normal and uncompetitive) to encourage these digital folk to do what we want.

Mudlark bird.

Instructions

  • Spread your bird seed far and wide, and watch our winged friends flock to you.
  • Grab your camera and photograph the different species you attract.
  • Upload your photographs to Flickr and tag with mudlarkFTB
  • Geotag the photos where you took them.

Scoring

  • Different birds score different points (see below)
  • Photograph as many different species as you can to rack up a high score.
  • Snap birds eating out of your hand for multipliers.
  • Track down and snap a mudlark for massive props and bonus points.