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The purpose of the project was to design and install two high-performance, high-resolution AV solutions that offer flexible and engaging video walls at the Wisconsin Institutes for Discovery (WID). The client requested multi-user interactivity interfaces for both solutions with way-finding and educational content.

The newly built facility, which opened in December 2010, houses twin interdisciplinary research institutes: the Morgridge Institute for Research, a private, not-for-profit research institute dedicated to improving human health by accelerating scientific discovery to patient delivery; and the public Wisconsin Institute for Discovery, which is part of UW–Madison organized under its Graduate School. The facility combines a private and public research facility under one roof, providing a unique setting in which interdisciplinary scientists work side-by-side.

What sets this building’s AV system apart from traditional installations is the seamless way in which the two interactive Christie MicroTiles arrays blend into the environment and promote participation with visitors. By incorporating both touch and gesture interactivity on the video walls, the WID has created a unique way to promote the work and activities being conducted in the facility.

The Donor Video Wall is a 10x4 MicroTiles array with both touch and gesture interactivity provided by Float4 Interactive. With a resolution of 5,496x1,650, the content, created by ZebraDog Dynamic Environment Design, keeps visitors engaged and entertained. Users can learn about donor history, research conducted, and staff members of the facility by selecting the category that they would like explore. A second wall, referred to as the Portal Wall is a 17x2 MicroTiles array with a resolution of 9,824x866. This array is also gesture-interactive, and it allows visitors to create effects, interact with items built into the content, and move them around on the wall. These effects on both MicroTiles walls were created and designed by ZebraDog communications.

The video walls’ AV is self-run with a Crestron AV2 control processor. A control panel behind each wall is used to control the power for both video walls, as well as being able to control the source content on the walls. From these panels, the user can select the audio source and control the volume. There is a scheduling program that automates when the wall turns on, and it controls which video and audio sources are played. At the end of the day, the system shuts itself down, eliminating the need for staff to control the wall. A third panel behind the front desk provides an override control of the system if quick changes to the video walls are needed.

Creative Team

Kevin Potts, David Starck, Kevin Ruschmann (R2W), AV Design/Integration
Randy Byrd (Sensory Interactive), AV Consulting
Alex Simionescu, Sevan Dalkian (Float4 Interactive), Interactivity Design
Chris Moore( ZebraDog Visual Culture), Video Content/Screen Design

Equipment

Donor Wall
10x4 Christie MicroTiles Array
Float 4 RealMotion Servers 2 Hokuyo Laser Range Finders
2 GigE uEye IR Network Video Cameras
2 Raytec Infra-Red Illuminators
4 Multidyne DVI Fiber Xxtenders
2 JBL Control 322C Speakers
1 Crown CTS600 Amplifier

Portal Wall
17x2 Christie MicroTiles Array
4 Christie External Control Units
1 Float 4 RealMotion Server Master
1 Float 4 RealMotion Server Slave
2 GigE uEye IR Network Video Cameras
2 Raytec Infra-Red Illuminators
4 Multidyne DVI Fiber Extenders
2 JBL Control 322C Speakers
1 Crown CTS600 Audio Amplifier
1 DBX Zonepro 1260 Audio Digital Signal Processor

Control
1 Crestron AV2 Processor
3 Crestron TPS-6L 6” Panels