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Matthew Rice

MA work

Scribe (Solo Major) & Voice Blox (Final Group Project)

Scribe (Solo Major)

Scribe is an accessible controller for stroke survivors which improves neural activity and upper limb mobility through double-handed drawing tasks. It is both an assistive and rehabilitative device, providing access to digital technologies and meaningful health outcomes. Both left and right-hand controllers capture a range of clinically significant user input movements, including gross hand motion, individual digit motion, grip strength, pinching and fine motor skills. It is a unique cognitive challenge, featuring a curriculum of drawing tasks which you must physically untangle through the movement of your hands.

Voice Blox (Final Group Project)

Voice Blox is the first language learning tool that embodies pronunciation as a simple physical form, allowing users to explore their accent with their hands. Voice Blox will finally get people to speak with a local accent. Mandarin speakers always demonstrate tones with a small finger gesture. This is because humans have an innate ability to relate body motion to sound. This is due to the close neural connections between the brain’s motor and auditory networks. We have found a way to teach everyone this intuitive gestural language using simple shapes to guide a learner’s hand. Over one third of students learn best from a hands-on experience, but typical lessons don’t cater for these people. Voice Blox reaches visual, auditory and tactile learners in a multi-modal experience which increases neural activity, resulting in stronger and longer-lasting memory recall.   


  • MA Degree


    School of Design


    MA Innovation Design Engineering, 2018

  • I design for interaction and engineer to make things that work. Human machine interaction and human-centred design strongly direct my graduate work. I enjoy the challenge of materialising tangible experiences from grey spaces, where an unusual synthesis of elements generates inspiring and novel contexts. I spend a lot of time looking at the structural ingredients of strong design practice, in attempts to rationalise, distil and so engage in a blended creative, technical and innovative process. This morphological definition of design informs my strategic process from defining a brief to prototyping, whilst permitting freedom to alternate between different frames of design reference. I'm not too attached to medium, but rather driven by exploration and insight-lead experimentation.

  • Degrees

  • BSc(Eng) in Mechanical Engineering, University of Cape Town, 2015
  • Experience

  • Product Design Engineer (special projects), Brompton Bikes, London, 2017; Mechanical Design Engineer, Ergofito South Africa, Cape Town, 2015; Manufacturing Engineer, Faurecia Emissions Control Technologies, Cape Town, 2014; Mechanical Design Engineer, Forrester De Beer & Associates, Cape Town, 2013
  • Exhibitions

  • Awards

  • South African Engineering Council Medal, Top student graduating with a BSc(Eng), 2015; Klaus-Jurgen Bathe Scholarship, Top mechanical engineering student, 2014; Bain & Company Merit Award, Excellence in engineering, 2014; Albert Wessels Prize, Best Mechanical Engineering Student, 2013-2015; UCT Engineering Faculty Scholarship, Top student, 2012-2014; Class Medal: Mechanical Engineering, Top student in mechanical engineering, 2013-2015; City of Cape Town Corporation Medal, Best engineering student UCT, 2013
  • Conferences

  • Publications