Meet the mentors of QG21!

At Quantum Games 2021 course, students create games based on their own ambition and skill levels, or based on how much time they have at hand to learn a new skill. In order to ease this process, we have a great collection of mentors helping the teams at the course´s Discord. All of our mentors have created some kind of quantum games, others with quantum physicist background and others with game developer background.

Samuli Jääskeläinen (Varjo) is an experienced game developer, game jam enthusiast and a creator of over 100 games. Samuli has been traveling the world trying to do a game jam on every continent. When he is not jamming, he is pushing the boundaries of modern virtual and augmented reality at Varjo Technologies. Samuli has experience in programming games from 80’s video game consoles to modern quantum computers and everything in between.

Jere Sanisalo (Supercell) is a seasoned game developer currently working at Supercell as a games programmer. Jere has roots in the Finnish demoscene and is passionate in solving programmable problems. Jere is also an avid game jammer, as he has been participating to such jams as ASM game jam, Survival Mode 2016, and Quantum Wheel in 2019, where he created a small humorous game on quantum USBs.

Laura Piispanen (Doctoral Candidate, Applied Physics Department, Aalto University) is working on a joint PhD between the Applied Physics Department and the Department of Media on her research on quantum games and is also finishing a masters degree in the University of Turku on Computer Science, focusing on interaction design and games. She has her first on-site Quantum Game Jam experience from 2019 as one of the organizers and has since then been involved with developing a citizen science game prototype designed for a quantum optimal control problem, a VR-experience that is based on a numerical simulation of quantum networks and other game and art projects related with quantum physics and quantum computing.

Originally from the UK, Jorden Senior (ISTPlus Postdoctoral Scholar, IST Austria) completed his PhD at Aalto University in 2019 studying the interactions of heat and superconducting qubits, making pioneering experiments in the emerging field of quantum thermodynamics, sometimes affectionately referred to as quantum steampunk. He has since moved to Vienna to build a laboratory established by Prof. Andrew Higginbotham to study phase transitions in quantum devices, using techniques from the superconducting quantum computing and optomechanics communities. He has participated both as a jammer and a mentor in multiple quantum gam jams, producing games such as Q|Cards> and the Quantum Dice, as well as several classical game jams.

James Wootton (Research Staff Member, IBM Research – Zurich) is a Research Staff Member at IBM Research – Zurich. His research now focusses on topics that are accessible to newcomers to quantum computing, to make sure that there are lots of useful and interesting topics for everyone to work on. This includes experimenting with what games can do for quantum computing, and what quantum computing can do for games. He has taught courses on quantum computing at the University of Basel, and was one of the founding authors of the Qiskit textbook.

Marcel Pfaffhauser (IBM Research – Zurich) studied computer science at ETH Zurich, with specialization in theory of computing. Afterwards he worked as a teaching and research assistant at the University Svizzera italiana in Lugano in the field of Quantum Information Theory. He then left research to work as a Unity Developer for 5 years, where he was focused on AR VR and Gamification. Last Year he joined IBM Research in Zurich to work in the Quantum Education Team.