About us

AltLab is a col­lec­tive dedi­ca­ted to inde­pen­dent rese­arch and expe­ri­men­ta­tion in alter­na­tive media. Com­mu­nity-based and com­mu­nity-buil­ding by nature, it seeks to pro­mote active par­ti­ci­pa­tion, kno­wledge sha­ring, and col­la­bo­ra­tion among indi­vi­du­als such as artists, pro­gram­mers, engi­ne­ers,  hobbyists, sci­en­tists, and all those who wish to fre­ely explore cre­a­tive and eman­ci­pa­tory uses of tech­no­logy. Just like many other hac­kers­pa­ces which have emer­ged all over the world in recent years, AltLab has also been foun­ded on the noti­ons of software/hardware libre and the belief in col­lec­tive inde­pen­dent plat­forms for open and active kno­wledge-sha­ring and expe­ri­men­ta­tion.

In Febru­ary 2009, a small group, under the umbrella of Audi­ên­cia Zero, joi­ned efforts to cre­ate AltLab with the fol­lowing objec­ti­ves: Build stron­ger com­mu­nity ties by gathe­ring dis­perse cells of rese­ar­chers, artists, and DIYers around a com­mon and open plat­form; Pro­vide a sha­red phy­si­cal space for expe­ri­men­ta­tion, tes­ting, and deve­lop­ment of new objects and con­cepts (ran­ging from robo­tics to soft­ware to art to con­cep­tual rese­arch); Share kno­wledge, sup­port col­la­bo­ra­tive work, and col­lec­ti­vely push the boun­da­ries of DIY cre­a­ti­vity; Esta­blish part­nerships and syner­gies within and across the bor­ders with other col­lec­ti­ves that share simi­lar goals and ide­als. To achi­eve these goals AltLab:

Pro­vi­des a col­lec­tive works­pace;

Orga­ni­zes, on a regu­lar basis, public workshops, con­fe­ren­ces, paper pre­sen­ta­ti­ons, exhi­bi­ti­ons, talks, deba­tes, etc.;

Offers open lab days where all inte­res­ted indi­vi­du­als are wel­come to join us with the pur­po­ses of: just lear­ning about the pro­ject, pre­sen­ting pro­po­sals and ideas, wor­king with us;

Con­sis­ten­tly expands the col­lec­tive by accep­ting new mem­bers and col­la­bo­ra­tors as well as esta­blishing part­nerships with other orga­ni­za­ti­ons;

Main­tains a high level of open­ness and fle­xi­bi­lity to insure that AltLab’s pro­jects and acti­vi­ties will be limi­ted only by the com­mit­ment and enthu­si­asm of those invol­ved and may be easily exten­ded beyond these ini­tial acti­vi­ties.

The founders…

Cata­rina Mota
PhD can­di­date, fel­low of FCT-MCTES, cofoun­der of openmaterials.org and fabriculture.org

Tiago Hen­ri­ques
media deve­lo­per, film pro­du­cer, tech geek and spe­le­o­logy & moun­tai­ne­e­ring addic­ted.

Gui­lherme Mar­tins
desig­ner, digi­tal artist, techno addict and fas­ci­na­ted by expe­ri­men­tal robo­tics.

Mónica Men­des
inter­face desig­ner, mul­ti­me­dia edu­ca­tor and enthu­si­as­tic rese­ar­cher of real-time video for sus­tai­na­bi­lity and artis­tic expe­ri­men­ta­tion.

Ricardo Web­bens
artist, i’m inte­res­ted in cir­cuit ben­ding, audio and video plat­forms, diy ins­tru­ments and con­trol­lers, music and every form of expe­ri­men­tal ideas.


Coordinator — July 2011 ~ July 2013

Mau­ri­cio Mar­tins
Maker of Things, Tin­ke­rer, and Open Source advo­cate. Works mainly as Col­la­bo­ra­tive Pro­ject Deve­lo­per focu­sed on DIY Expe­ri­men­ta­tion with Elec­tro­nics, Phy­si­cal Com­pu­ting and Digi­tal Fabri­ca­tion.


Coordinator — July 2013 ~ Dec 2014

Rui Mar­ce­lino
Inde­pen­dent Robo­tic Solu­ti­ons Deve­lo­per


Current Coordinator — Jan 2015 ~ …

Vini­cius Silva
Comu­ni­ca­tion and Pro­duc­tion Desig­ner