Late iAward for Spider-House

Late iAward for Spider-House

This was a belated presentation but for the team of Spider-House (The Undergraduate Tertiary Students iAward), it was an opportunity to also tour Parliament House in Hobart.

Unable to attend the June Tasmanian iAwards, the team of Melanie Laan, Julian Smithies, Robert Pittam and Sarah Ketchell recently met with Rob Valentine MLC at the Legislative Council Chambers.

Rob has been a member of the Legislative Council since 2012 and involved in technology since 1974. Always a passionate supporter of the Tasmanian technology community, Rob was the sponsor of this particular award category.

For the team, creating the game created some challenges.

“In the base code of unity, it has player movements groups. We had to edit them to allow the game to move in specific ways,” said team member, Robert Pittam.

“For VR (virtual reality) we had to change the movements scripts so they moved in relation to the head-set. We had to make it so you could move forward in the direction the head-set was pointing.”

There was also a connection with a data-base where the team could pull spiders in real time and connected them into the game.

Rob Valentine said it is wonderful that today one can grab hold of an idea and work to create a program which has a positive outcome for people.

“It is unbelievable you can download a program where you can put on virtual reality goggles and interact with creatures and hopefully reduce your phobia.”

Spider-house is a virtual arachnophobia treatment program that can be used both on the web and through virtual reality. It is designed as a gamified exposure therapy in which players are asked to perform common household tasks while in the presence of spiders in order to normalise being in the presence of spiders but not forcing interaction.

04 July 2018


  • Alphawest
  • Anittel
  • Tasmania
  • iiNet
  • TasNetworks
  • Hays
  • Hewlett Packard
  • RXP
  • Microsoft
  • TasmaNet
  • Telstra