Best Technical Achievement or Innovation, Australian Event Awards 2016
We were engaged by Imagination to supply the in-house exhibition audio guide for the Spirit of ANZAC Centenary Exhibition (SACE), a joint project between the Australian War Memorial, Commonwealth Department of Veterans Affairs, Commonwealth Bank of Australia and Telstra. The exhibition is a high-traffic venue and requires the audio guide to serve approximately 1.2 million attendees across a 19-month touring schedule. The integrated hardware and software solution that we developed provides accurate and consistent location triggered audio events and features real-time audio synchronisation between various time-based media exhibits inside the dense 1200 square metre space.
Imagination approached us with a challenging project brief that required a leading-edge locative audio guide solution capable of serving 1.2 million visitors across a demanding touring schedule (traveling to 24 cities across Australia). The audio guide hardware had to be reliable, easy to clean and comfortable for visitors with light-weight headphones and support for high-quality stereo sound. The guide application had to operate without WiFi connectivity and instead perform all data synchronisation tasks over USB whilst docked for charging.
As with all of our projects, the SACE Audio Experience transparently implements a range of technologies to enable a seamless and immersive journey through the exhibition space. All visitors are provided the audio guide on entry and as they move through the exhibition the audio guide automatically provides narration according to their immediate surroundings. Multiple layers of ambient sound effects and music specific to each exhibit seamlessly fade in and out across the narration. The immersive soundscape is further enhanced with an audio-video synchronisation system that permits the headphone audio to be accurately synchronised with exhibition video displays, without the requirement for an active WiFi connection.
The touring show nature of the project presented a number of challenges relating to the exhibition’s dependence on the audio guide, operation within remote geographic locations, and provision of a highly-available system with no single point of failure.
Art Processors provided the following services for the project:
- Technology consulting
- Project management
- System architecture design
- Software and hardware design
- Software and hardware engineering
- IT and AV hardware procurement
- Compute infrastructure build and configuration
- Quality assurance and testing
- Ongoing support and maintenance
The following Art Processors technology components are utilised:
- Centralised audio tour content and configuration management
- Indoor location system and Bluetooth beacon hardware
- Locative Audio Engine
- Audio-video synchronisation system
- USB to Ethernet data and clock synchronisation system
- Local content mirror
- Analytics usage reporting and user data tour save system
- Mobile Guide Hardware including cases and charging system
The SACE project launched in September 2015 and the audio guide system supplied by Art Processors has to date served 40,000 visitors to date at a peak volume of 2,500 visitors per day.