Digital Pinball; A Design Intervention

Presentation at The University of Mary Washington. Fredericksburg Virginia, June  7th, 2023.


This presentation will focus on the online communities supporting the pinball arts, from vintage classic restoration, and user experience preservation, to custom Visual Pinball (vPin) cabinet making. These online communities are a fast-growing subculture of the pinball world. User-generated content drives playfield design, software and hardware interface development, and even novel use of augmented reality/virtual reality experiences. Through conversations with custom pinballers in the vPin community, Daniel Phelps explores the open-source software, high-end hardware, haptic emulation, and the virtual cabinet experience archive that supports this emerging homebrew art form.


This 30-minute presentation was developed through Daniel’s P.h.D. research into a new type of AR taxonomy, the Augmented Intermediate Layer, or AIL. Daniel has been a supporter of Reclaim Hosting since its inception, preaching ideologies such as “Domain of Ones Own” in the classroom and beyond.