Aydin Arpa


Courtesy of Aydın Arpa's family

Courtesy of Aydın Arpa's family

by Alexandra Kahn

Oct. 2, 2023


The Media Lab community mourns the loss of Aydin Arpa, who passed away from complications of ALS. 

Aydin received his master’s degree in the Media Lab's Camera Culture group in 2012, studying under Professor Ramesh Raskar. A gifted technologist and designer with multiple patents to his name, Aydin also brought valuable leadership and management skills to the image processing, computer vision, and computational cellphone microscopy research projects he took on. 

"Aydin brought rigor and energy from his experience in industry to his Media Lab research, and was skilled at taking technologies to the next level–for engaging experiences, new health applications, and social impact," said Media Lab Professor Ramesh Raskar. "He will be greatly missed."


Aydin Arpa

Otkrist Gupta, a fellow Camera Culture alum, remembers Aydin as a valued friend and inspiring colleague:

“The light that burns twice as bright burns half as long—and you have burned so very, very brightly, Aydin.”

I met Aydin in my second year at the Media Lab. I was truly surprised by his brilliance and accomplishments, at such a young age. Aydin was a self-made man; he had worked on voice recognition, AI technology, and some of his inventions were used in products such as Siri. 

Even though he was a successful entrepreneur, Aydin chose to come to MIT to learn and expand his horizons. And so we began to work together on a project called “Angled Graphs,” which later became his thesis.

But I think it wasn't his accomplishments or his academic merit which made him truly unique—it was his approach towards life. It completely changed how I looked at my own life. Aydin stood for following our dreams and living our life to the fullest. He was a true friend, a great person to hang out with, and a lot of fun to have random adventures with! 

Even though I overlapped with him for only a year, he left an everlasting imprint on my life. In his final days I am grateful that I was able to connect with him once more. Even though it was hard on him physically, he responded to me, and we talked about life and about books—a conversation that will always stay with me. Those who touch our lives stay in our hearts, and I will forever be inspired by the values that he stood for of friendship, joy and achievement.


Aydin Arpa

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