Todd Cochrane

Todd Cochrane

Todd Cochrane
Todd Cochrane is a software developer in research and for art. At NMIT, he teaches on database, web development and programming courses.

Todd started his research computing career in 1995 as a programmer in a team that created the disease outbreak management software for the New Zealand government. Todd is a very experienced software developer with a strong interest in computing in creative and innovative projects. As a developer and writer in the Second Life Education New Zealand project, he developed interface components of a role-playing simulation of the normal birth process. Prior to joining NMIT in 2013, Todd spent 11 years as a lecturer at Wellington Institute of Technology, where he was awarded the first NEC fellowship.

Over the last several years Todd has collaborated in the development of technology as used by artists, for example, using data sensing in dance at the 2011 Conference on Digital Resources for Humanities and Arts. He was also invited to present Senses Places as part of an artist team at the 2013 third edition of the Line Up Action Performing Art Festival in Portugal. He has presented He Mohiotanga at the Conference on Creative Education, Shanghai (2012) and ran a workshop on Online Interactive Art, at the invitation of Maker Space in Chile.

Todd has worked on ‘border crossing’ between virtual and real worlds and has applied these practices in research and education. In 2013 he delivered a workshop on how to install a 3D virtual environment in the cloud at Cyberport, Hong Kong and was a consulting analyst for the New Zealand Sock Company.

Todd is currently studying towards a PhD in Education (Technology) in which he is working with a Maritime Studies tutor at NMIT to develop a ship’s bridge communication training system and to understand how to use 3D virtual worlds effectively in vocational education.

“As an educator in IT, I like to immerse myself in the cutting edge of technology in the digital area to keep myself up to date. As a computer scientist, I’m interested in the human-computer interaction domain and computer systems that organise themselves. It’s a hugely complex area, but most importantly, it’s fun!”

Bachelor of Science (Honours)

Recent research outputs

Participation in research projects

2009 - 2013

Dance technology collaboration with Dr Isabel Valverde. Pilot studies using multi­user virtual environments in educational contexts. Sensing body data transmission and effects in live dance.

Cochrane, T. (July, 2009). Determining the state of code in a prototype Tine Flight recording device. Consultancy for FTL.

Cochrane, T. (2009). SLENZ Developer. TEC-funded project to establish suitability of Second Life as a teaching tool.


THE SLENZ PROJECT Funded by the New Zealand Tertiary Education Commission.

The New Zealand virtual world education group, Second Life Education New Zealand (SLENZ), has set up a research project in the on-line virtual world of Second Life for New Zealand educators to pilot at least two projects into determining how multi-user virtual environments might benefit New Zealand education and how this can best be done. Using the multi-user virtual environment

Second Life, the project aims to delineate and demonstrate to New Zealand educators and students the educational strengths or otherwise of learning in a virtual world. (Team member)

2008 Centre for Creative Technologies (Wellington Institute of Technology) project

2008 "An intelligence for cross-world collaboration, Real and Virtual." ISEA Singapore (team member)

2007-2008 IPENZ (Institute of Professional Engineers New Zealand) grant used to invite Clayton Gumbrell, Electronics Engineer to help develop FPGA teaching capacity. (Coordinator)

2007 Coordinator of a collaborative cross-discipline experiential learning project. Arts, Electronic and Computing producing the Earthed Exhibition. Invited Raphael Abrams to come to show us how Artists use electronics. Wellington Institute of Technology innovation grant project. (Coordinator)

2007 On the core team for the Big Spark collaborative cross-discipline project. Big Spark was a Centre for Creative Technologies, Wellington Institute of Technology project to provide students and staff with an experience in working with cross­ discipline teams. (Team member)

2006 Developing a technology transfer device, for illiterate Quechan populations. Making knowledge accessible even if you do not read. I was a team member. I produced DVD and a prototype multimedia player, and undertook language translation from English to Spanish then with the help of a native speaker to Quechua. A project set up by the Centre for Smart Products, Wellington Institute of Technology, and Stitch Limited. (Team member)


A team member of various projects undertaken by the Centre for Epidemiology at Massey University in Palmerston North, NZ. 

(Programming, Task management, Borland Object Pascal, MS Access, Delphi 2.0) Simulates tuberculosis in possum populations. Senior programmer/developer. Persistence, graphics, model coding.

EpiMAN FMD (Foot and mouth disease)
(MS Access, Visual C, Borland C, Unix administration, Visual Basic 3.0) Epidemic outbreak management system. Assisted with debugging, running simulated outbreaks, translated Pascal virus production model to C. Fixed bugs in Windspread (VB 3.0)

EpiMAN TB ( tuberculosis )
(OCX Implementation, C++) Bovine Tuberculosis control strategy and decision

Papers in journals

Cochrane, T., Davis, N. and Morrow, D. (2013). A Proposed Theory Seeded Methodology for Design Based Research into Effective use of MUVEs in Vocational Education Contexts. Int. J. Virtual Pers. Learn. Environ 4, 2 (April 2013), 50-64. DOI=10.4018/jvple.2013040103

Papers in conference proceedings

Valverde, I., & Cochrane, T. (2014) Innovative Dance-Technology Educational Practices within Senses Places. In SLACTIONS 2013 Research conference on virtual worlds - Learning with simulations: 21-23 November, 2013,SLActions2013, published in

Cochrane, T., Davis, N., & Mackey, J. (2013) Reflecting on using a theory seeded methodology for designing and building effective 3D Multi-User Virtual Environments for vocational education. In Electric Dreams, 30th annual conference of the Australian Society for Computers in Learning in Tertiary Education (ASCILITE) 1-4 Dec 2013, Sydney , Australia, ASCILITE.

Lemon, T., McGhee, G., Ward, D., and Cochrane, T. (2012). Hemohiotanga – the sharing of knowledge Reflections on a film industry workshop practice based creative technology course that acknowledged our culture. Conference on Creative Education 2012. Volume 1: 634. Shanghai, China

Valverde, I. and Cochrane, T. (2011). SENSES PLACES. Cross-cultural Embodiments through Hybrid Participatory Performance Environment. 2011 Digital Resources in the Humanities and Arts (DRHA) Collaboration (Participatory Performance and Round Table), Nottingham University, Ningbo Campus, China. 6 September 2011.

Trower, L., & Cochrane, T. (July, 2010). Using design research in the development of a final year HCI class project. Poster presentation in 1st Annual Conference of Computing and Information Technology, Education and Research in New Zealand (incorporating 23rd Annual NACCQ).

Cochrane, T., & Cockeram, J. (Aug, 2010). Reflections on using a Multi-User Virtual Environment in an attempt at providing more authentic learning for two tertiary classes at different institutes. Poster presentation in Graham Nuthall Classroom Research Trust - International Symposium 2010, University of Canterbury; Christchurch, New Zealand

Cochrane, T., & Valverde, I. (2013) Dancing in the Cloud: Design for Dance Technology Collectives, in Proceedings of the 4th Annual Conference of Computing and Information Technology Research and Education (CITRENZ2013), 6-9 November 2013, Poster, pp 156 - 157, Computing & Information Technology Research and Education New Zealand, Hamilton.

Cochrane, T., & Wincer, R. (2013) How Not to Sink a Ship: Vocational Education in 3DVWs. in Proceedings of the 4th Annual Conference of Computing and Information Technology Research and Education (CITRENZ2013), 6-9 November 2013, Poster, pp 154 - 155, Computing & Information Technology Research and Education New Zealand, Hamilton.

Cochrane, T. and Valverde, I. (2011). SENSES PLACES – Dancer to Avatar web-enabled motion data capture system.

Valverde, I., Cochrane, T. and Lee, P.J. (2011). SENSES PLACES. Dance Technology Workshop 3. Kenneth Myers Center, National Institute of Creative Arts and Industries, University of Auckland.

McGhie, G., Ward, D., Cochrane, T. and Lemon, T. (2011). He Mohiotanga – The Sharing of Knowledge (Māori carving with animated digital overlay and interactive wall, 2M high x 4M wide). Installation at Cyberport, Hong Kong.

Valverde, I., & Cochrane, T. (Nov, 2010). Physical-Virtual Body-Game Interfaces, a workshop presented twice at the Interface 2 (2010) Cochrane, T. (Nov, 2010) How can multiuser Virtual Environments be used effectively in vocational contexts? Case study findings for communities of practice from design-based research. UC College of Education, Christchurch

Cochrane, T. (June, 2010). MUVE experience for secondary students at the WelTec Teki Hui.

Valverde, I., & Cochrane, T. (2010). From Real Virtual Games to Weathering In/Com Tempo: developing a dance-technology remote collaboration. Presentation of paper at Digital Resources for Humanities and Arts 2010, held at Brunel University, London, UK

Cochrane, T. (Oct, 2010). Dance technology. Research presentation to fine arts students, Valparaiso, Chile.

Close drawer

a page loading spinner