Experiencing gorillas in the cloud was my graduation project. The project explores the possibilities on how to make captured sensor data about gorillas experiential to zoo visitors. Eleven HD cameras have been installed around the gorilla island in primate park Apenheul. Through intelligent data processing technologies made by TNO detections of gorillas can be made.

A variety of detection methods can be applied, allowing the system to generate data about location, tracks, identity, actions & activities, likeability and even emotions and group dynamics. The gathered data can be analyzed to find patterns and anomalies. TNO is developing the sensor technology and the technical back end system. The question remains, what will happen with the collected data?

The process

For a detailed description of my design process, see visual below.

A number of installations in the park have been conceptualized. They raise awareness about the project and provide additional user experiences to the park visitors, using the data captured by the system.

The user experiences should be engaging, educating, involving, fun, bonding, relating and reflective.



My graduation project was rewarded with an 8 and made me an official Master of science.

A trail of six installations was conceptualised.

  1. Bleep, showing the live location of the gorillas with live images
  2. The gorilla matching mirror, which allows users to pose as a gorilla
  3. An interactive gorilla profile wall, showing personal gorilla information
  4. Interactive map visualizations, showing island usage
  5. Augmented binoculars, overlaying real images with the names of and the distance to gorillas
  6. A Gorilla control center where video clips can be watched and assessed


The gorilla matching mirror has been prototyped and tested with children in the science centre of TU Delft. The movie below gives an impression of the prototype and the user testing

The test results suggest it is a viable product. The product connects users with technology and gorillas and increases awareness for gorillas in the cloud.

For more information about gorillas in the cloud, see the TNO website.

Download my graduation report here.

The repository of the thesis is found here.