My work focuses on developing interactive technologies, leveraging advancements in display technology, low-power sensing, wearables, robotics and actuation, soft electronics, interactive textile, and human-computer interaction. I am specifically interested in techniques that enable new interaction for the augmentation and empowerment of human abilities. This includes augmented reality, ubiquitous computing, mobile devices, 3D user interfaces, interaction techniques, interfaces for accessibility and health, medical imaging, multimodal systems, and software/hardware prototyping.

These projects are from collaborations during my time at different research labs, including Google Research, MIT, Columbia University, University of California, KTH (Royal Institute of Technology), and Microsoft Research. I have taught at Stanford University, Rhode Island School of Design and KTH.

Research Projects Publications Google Scholar Open Source
Alex Olwal, Ph.D.
Sr Research Scientist, Google
olwal [at]
Alex Olwal

Textile Structure for Sensing and Light
I/O Braid is an interactive textile cord with embedded sensing and visuals. It senses user's proximity, touch, and twist, while embedded fiber optics enable spiraling light feedback.
I/O Braid: Scalable Touch-Sensitive Lighted Cords Using Spiraling, Repeating Sensing Textiles and Fiber Optics
Olwal, A., Moeller, J., Priest-Dorman, G., Starner, T., and Carroll, B.
Proceedings of UIST 2018 - Best Demo Award (ACM Symposium on User Interface Software and Technology), Berlin, Germany, Oct 14-17, 2018, pp. 485-497.

UIST 2018 - Best Demo Award
PDF [18MB]