RetroCam caters to all those times when you exclaim “Quick! Where’s the camera?”. A beautiful, ambient device, the RetroCam sits quietly in whichever household context you are most likely to miss one of those magic moments.

A simple stroke gesture tells RetroCam how far back in time to go before saving footage. A short stroke will go only thirty seconds back in time, longer will save one full minute while a stroke along the entire back of the device saves the full minute and a half. Subtle lights on the front and rear blink to indicate how much footage is being captured.


The distinctive difference between RetroCam and a normal camera is that it gives users the opportunity to save memorable moments that have already passed.  When the camera is touched, it saves footage from the previous minute. It’s always on, so when that hilarious expression, gesture or first word happens, a simple “touch and stroke” gesture immortalises the memory in a beautifully graded video.

RetroCam recordings can be shared safely through our web service, accessible from anywhere. Distant, or not so distant family and friends can be invited to browse, and share in the moments you’ve captured.


As a result of a 4 1/2 weeks Tangible User Interface course, our working prototype combines explorations in user-research, interaction, product design, embedded electronics and programming. The final prototype device and web service provided a fully functional experience for further user testing.

RetroCam was created with Alix Gillet-Kirt and Chris Bierbower. Faculty on this course at CIID IDP’11 were Richard Shed, David Gauthier and Vinay Venkatraman.