A collaborative research project between Berg and Future Cities Catapult.
Future Cities Catapult is interested in how our cities will feel and perform when objects, spaces, buildings, infrastructure and people are connected. As part of an ongoing design research project about the connected street, the Catapult collaborated with Berg, a UK-based technology company, to explore the possibilities of connected displays. Berg pursued the idea through making a prototype called Pixel Track. The Catapult pursued the idea through a series of interviews with those who commission, curate and manage signage. You can watch both short films below, read Berg's case study about Pixel Track and visit Future Cities Catapult for further context and more projects like this.
With Pixel Track, Berg explore the idea of connected displays through prototyping, creating a display appropriate to a specific kind of emerging networked use. The display uses a mechanical ‘scanning’ based system for updating pixels. This means that the display consumes no power while it remains static. The mechanical nature of the surface means there is room for great flexibility in the form and material qualities of the display. The device itself is relatively 'dumb', and is controlled instead by services in the cloud, enabling easy configuration and management, as well as the ability to respond in real-time to internet-based services and interactions.
The Catapult held a series of discussions with those who commission, procure, curate and manage displays and signage. Finn Williams, of the Greater London Authority, is responsible for urban regeneration projects across London. He discusses the Mayor of London's strategies to de-clutter the high street, whilst reinforcing local culture through signage. Corinna Gardner of the Victoria & Albert Museum is part of a new team curating this emerging product category. She also describes the museum's need for a more dynamic form of display. Jon Hunter is Head of Design for Transport for London, and responsible for design across a wide variety of complex environments, requiring high standards of accessibility, resilience and consistency. Nigel McKay is Lend Lease's head of innovation for the Elephant & Castle development in London, and is exploring how such products might enable new amenities and services for residents and visitors, as well as realising strategic ambitions around low-carbon living.
Programme director: Dan Hill
Project lead: Claire Mookerjee
Film: Gynna Millan
Many thanks to
Greater London Authority, Victoria & Albert Museum, Transport for London and Lend Lease.