Ben Buchwald's Portfolio
Ben Buchwald
Themed Entertainment Engineer
617.780.0380
Technology consultant specializing in software engineering and technology integration for themed entertainment experiences with unique hardware input and output devices.

Projects

Google
Experience Studio
October 2016 - Current
Experience Engineer
  • Developed interactive exhibits showcasing Google technologies to clients
  • Managed development/integration of hardware/software by outside vendors
  • Supported show control of lighting and environment in demo/meeting spaces
5 Wits Productions
November 2007 - October 2017
Show Control Engineer
  • Programmed show control and lighting for 10+ immersive adventures
  • Engineered touch screen-based operator control interfaces
  • Introduced automatic difficulty and length adjustment to manage pipelined group throughput
Hasbro
Integrated Play Team
November 2015 - May 2016
Game Engineer
  • Prototyped proof-of-concepts with several physical-digital technologies
  • Built libraries to integrate new hardware with Unity3D on iOS and Android
  • Created polished green-light demos for mobile game concepts
Harmonix Music Systems
April 2009 - May 2014
November 2014 - October 2015
Software Developer
  • Shipped 8+ AAA video games on multiple platforms
  • Developed tools to support music gameplay authoring and publication
  • Improved engine facilities/tools for animation, UI, fonts, and localization
  • Supported in-game store and other networked features of released games
PlayMotion
August 2006 - August 2007
May 2005 - May 2006
Game Engineer
  • Designed and programmed video games with whole body shadow interaction
  • Installed shadow tracking and projection systems for events and permanent installations
  • Built custom hardware devices for input and control
New Philadelphia AR Tour
Studio Amakawa /
National Park Service

September 2014 - November 2014
Augmented Reality Tour of National Historic Site
  • Developed augmented reality tracking system for overlaying virtual scenery on a historic site based on physical guideposts
  • Designed code framework for designer to add content to AR tour mobile app
  • Provided technical support for publishing app in iOS and Android app stores
Living Landscapes
PlayMotion / Disney Imagineering
Game and Controls Engineer
January 2007 - July 2007
Crowd-controlled Games for Walt Disney World Ride Queue
  • Developed a networked race game for 250 guests waiting in line at a popular EPCOT Center attraction
  • Designed easy-to-use control panel for line game operators
  • Engineered synchronization and monitoring framework capable of maintaining 95% uptime for multi-machine system operating 12 hrs/day
Atlantic City Pier Fountain
Thinkwell Design & Production
Vision and Gameplay Engineer
January 2006 - August 2006
Interactive Computer Vision-based Fountain Games
  • Innovated interactive content to complement hourly fountain shows
  • Implemented engaging, natural interactions with water and lights
  • Interfaced cameras, vision algorithms, and DMX-controlled lights and water
Leehom Wang Concert Visualization
Demiurge Unit
Vision and Graphics Engineer
September 2008 - September 2009
Real-time 3D Visualization for Rock Concert
  • Created real-time 3D model of performer using stereo camera
  • Visualized on upstage LED wall using particle system with live MIDI controls
  • Set up and operated equipment for four shows of multi-city Asian tour
Movie Theater Audience Gaming
Brand Experience Lab / Volvo
Computer Vision Engineer
September 2007 - October 2007
Pre-show Audience-controlled Game for Movie Theaters
  • Continuation of six years of undergraduate and graduate research
  • Adapted computer vision-based audience control to existing Flash gameplay
  • Coordinated simultaneous installation, testing, and execution across 12 cities
Times Square Interactive Ads
PlayMotion / AT&T
System Integration Engineer
December 2005 - January 2006
Cell Phone-controlled Interactive Advertising
  • Connected pan/tilt/zoom camera to LED sign in Times Square to be controlled by phone keypad
  • Integrated automated phone system, camera, web databases, and SMS messaging to allow pedestrians to capture and download photos
  • Operated interactive sign control center on New Years Eve
World's Fair for Kids
Entertainment Technology Center
Technology Development Lead
September 2005 - May 2006
Several Interactive Experiences for Worlds Fair-style Event
  • Prototyped "world's largest" Pong game to be played via projection on a soccer field by an audience of 3000
  • Designed interactive, networked music-making experience for 32 people with integrated theatrical show elements
  • Supported and improved interactive animatronic host character
Toy Robotics Initiative
CMU Robotics Institute
Embedded System Programmer
January 2003
Rapid Development of Robots using a Prototype Control Board
  • Assembled five robots in two weeks using a new experimental robotics board
  • Developed interface library to control robotic sensors and actuators
  • Coded wireless telepresence robotic arm and web-controllable drawing robot
Spring Carnival Booths
Alpha Epsilon Pi
Project Manager
Game Designer
Lead Programmer

April 2000 - April 2006
Immersive Themed Attractions for a Carnival Midway
  • Seven years of building booths focused on guest experience by adding story and live cast members to traditionally passive visuals
  • Added immersive games that integrated with overall booth theming
  • Managed a team of approximately 30 people as project manager