NOTE: This project was more thought experiment than full blown software development


I spent all of my sophomore year at MIT taking virtual classes. When I went back to campus my junior year, I noticed that my favorite part of going to class was running into people and saying hello.

I found myself taking longer routes to classes where I knew I would bump into people. It made me wonder how I could replicate quick, serendipitous interactions online.

I didn't want to make a new platform that people had to go to (ie a new app or website). I wanted to find a passive way to slip human connections into already existing digital workflows.

What's a digital platform we all use that can be modified for social interactions?

BOOM! Google Chrome šŸ˜Ž

A lot of my friends and I use Apple products, but Apple doesn't let you alter their software. However, most of my friends and I DO use Google Chrome (which DOES let you modify their software). So, I made a new tab Chrome extension where you can see other users' mouse movements in real time. The interactions are limited and fleeting, just like running into someone between classes.


I made this usingĀ Google Chrome extensions,Ā Websockets, andĀ P5js. User data is also stored in a Heroku server using SQL.

I ran into websocket/server bugs and stopped development after it was taking up too much time. I learned what I wanted about web sockets and chrome extensions.

Below is a demo (where the site breaks oops) and a system diagram.