UCL startup Musemio brings history of computing alive with new VR game
20 May 2020
Musemio is working with the Hellenic IT Museum in Greece to help children everywhere explore the rich history of computing through a new mobile virtual reality game.
Cofounded by UCL alumna Kaitlin Fritz (UCL History of Art 2018) and Olga Kravchenko, Musemio makes mobile virtual reality games that allow children to explore arts, culture and history.
The company has won several awards for its innovative, immersive and accessible education experiences. They’ve also seen increased demand for their products during the coronavirus crisis as children learn from home.
Their latest collaboration is with the Hellenic IT Museum in Greece, a unique and rare collection of milestone computers and hardware that have contributed to the development of information technology.
Kaitlin explains: “This new Musemio mobile VR experience, Hellenic IT Museum: Computer Paradeisos, opens up the exciting world of the history of computer technology for children in a way they understand, through play. Our adventure is immersive, with quests and games that bring to life fascinating stories to be found in the museum. We believe it will not only spark their imagination but also increase their curiosity to learn more about computer technology.’’
Exploring virtual reality worlds
One of the new games places children in the fictitious land of ‘Computer Paradeisos,’ where computers go after they’re no longer needed. Players jump inside a computer, into a circuit-like labyrinth, and within this maze they learn about computer parts like RAM and motherboards as well as concepts such as Moore’s Law of technology.
Another game allows children to explore a room with some of the first gaming equipment, including the Atari console and joysticks, learning about their development as well as playing mini ‘old school’ video games.
Supporting startups and partnerships
Musemio have previously taken part in the extracurricular entrepreneurship programmes at UCL Innovation & Enterprise, receiving business advice, free office space and mentoring from the Entrepreneurship team.
More recently they worked with the Global Innovation team at UCL Innovation & Enterprise, who were able to help them secure the international partnership with the Hellenic IT Museum.
Kaitlin says: “UCL Innovation & Enterprise has enabled us to have international reach without ever leaving London. This partnership would not have been possible without the support of the Global Innovation team through their Enterprise Europe Network (EEN) activities. It has opened-up collaboration with members including Costas Karamanis of EEN-Hellas and George Tsekouras, Founder and President of the Hellenic IT Museum.”
The Global Innovation team provides specialist advice to innovative businesses and high-growth SMEs, supporting them to manage and commercialise innovation, as well as to grow and scale internationally. These services are fully funded as part of a partnership with Innovate UK and the Executive Agency for Small and Medium Enterprises (EASME).
Martin Davies, Director of Innovation Partnerships, UCL Innovation & Enterprise commented, “We’re very proud to see Musemio, one of our award-winning startups, launching this valuable educational technology tool to aid remote learning through such an exciting VR adventure. This partnership with the Hellenic IT Museum is an inspiring initiative that allows for the wonder of a rich cultural showcase to reach straight into the homes of children across the world, which is particularly valuable at a time when schools are shut for many students.”
An evidence-based approach to education
Musemio is built on pedagogy developed from research at UCL Institute of Education’s EDUCATE Program, the UK’s leading research accelerator programme for education technology (EdTech), and Finland’s world-renowned xEDU educational accelerator programme.
Professor Allison Littlejohn, Director of UCL Knowledge Lab at UCL Institute of Education, commented: “The need for high quality, online education for children has never been so great. The gaming and VR features of the Hellenic IT Museum allow for the sort of playful and experiential learning that children enjoy. Teachers and parents can be reassured that the pedagogical design is based on research on AI for education facilitated by learning scientists at UCL”.
Find out more about:
- entrepreneurship support for UCL students and recent graduates
- support available to SMEs from the Global Innovation team
- UCL Institute of Education’s EDUCATE programme
Photo © Musemio