Sherlock Holmes & the Internet of Things

On September 28th, a group of 25 storytellers, game designers, developers, makers, academics, and students came together for our Sherlock Holmes & the Internet of Things launch event. Over the course of the day teams explored ways to re-imagine the world of Sherlock Holmes.

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Starting in October, Sherlock Holmes and the Internet of Things will be holding monthly meetups. We welcome collaborators from various backgrounds to step into an open design space. The goal of the experiment is to prototype something that’s presented at Lincoln Center during NYFF 53 in 2015. If you’d like to learn more please sign up.


One of the goals of Sherlock Holmes & the Internet of Things, is to open up and share collaborative design methods that can assist diverse teams of creatives. As story and code continue to mix, there is a struggle to find common language between collaborators. Our hope is that this year-long experiment can do so in a fun, social and innovative manner.

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We welcome your comments, suggestions and questions. For more information visit

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Bit by Bit: Experiments in Digital Storytelling

The democratization of creative tools—code, data and algorithms—have changed the relationship between creator and audience. Stories are spilling off screens and into the real world and a new storytelling grammar is being shaped due to shifts in media consumption and device penetration.

bit by bit is a week-long exploration and reflection on the powerful pairing of story and technology and the roles they play in society—discovering and reimagining the poignant and the persuasive, the confining and liberating.

On Saturday, February 22nd a group of storytellers, hackers, makers, game developers and experience designers came together for a day full of experimentation, coding, networking and fun. Designed to push at the edges of form and function, Experiments in Digital Storytelling invited participants to challenge the way stories are told and experienced. Over the course of the day teams worked to design, build and present a plan for a project of their choosing. The challenge – harness storytelling and technology as a way to create a storytelling experience that evokes emotion and empathy.

Bit by Bit: Experiments in Digital Storytelling is a joint effort between the Brown Institute of Media Innovation, Columbia School of Journalism, the Digital Storytelling Lab @Columbia and Reboot Stories. Special thanks to our sponsor AOL.

What could a Digital Storytelling Lab at Columbia look like?

This past week we held our first Digital Storytelling Lab @Columbia event. Almost a year ago we started organizing a number of think tanks around what a digital storytelling lab at Columbia University could look like. Over time, that lead to the formation of a working group within the school. Through the working group, we’ve started to partner with a number of schools within Columbia. One partner is the Journalism School, who hosted the evening.

The structure of evening consisted of a number of speed talks by

Mark Hansen (telling stories with data)

Nicholas Fortugno (empathy within gaming)

Debika Shome (measuring impact)

Dennis Tenen & Tamar Lando (Illicit Knowledge)

Katie Torn (Hacking Hollywood)

Lance Weiler (data generative stories and story artifacts)

After the speed talks concluded participants were asked “What do you think a digital storytelling lab @columbia could be?” The responses were then clustered on nearby windows.


In order to help harvest the collective intelligence of the room we staged a world cafe exercise where participants engaged in 3 rounds of discussions as they rotated tables. Each round utilized a question to help focus the conversation. The only rule – you must write on the table as you talk.

The evening concluded with a social mixer and drinks. Over 100 people attended the event in what was a mix of faculty, industry and storytelling practitioners.

The hope is that the Digital Storytelling Lab @Columbia can grow over time. We’re always looking for collaborators who are interested in exploring the current and future landscape of storytelling.