Two decades of innovation at ISE - part 5: The rise of multifunctional spaces
By the end of the 1990s the internet was a utility for office-based operations. SMEs housed IT departments on premises. Digital connectivity began to be wired into the fabric of the building. Open-plan office layouts encouraged staff to be more collaborative and internal communication, lighting and boardroom audio systems began to be aligned with controls for heating, ventilation, and air con. In 2004, the term ‘smart building’ was common, even if it existed more as a concept than a holistic practical design.
This was also the end of the era of big nightclubs as inner-city warehouses began to be redeveloped and other venues began to cater for multiple tenancies enabled by more flexible networking infrastructure.
Retail, hospitality and museums began a process of ‘architainment’ in which buildings were reimagined as entertainment spaces
As Dan Goldstein, Chief Marketing Officer, AVIXA puts it, “The question was no longer how deep can the bass go but how can we interact with video and control audio and video in different spaces.”
Retail, hospitality and museums began a process of ‘architainment’ in which buildings were reimagined as entertainment spaces and where audio, video and lighting needed equal weight in design.
This trend continues today. MSG Sphere in Las Vegas offers wind and scent effects to complement giant video creations. Its spatial audio system presents different sonic experiences to different audience segments. Museum-art installations routinely include spatial audio, projected video and touch interfaces perhaps combined with an AI to deliver bespoke visual interactions. Virtual and augmented reality headsets such as Apple Vision Pro will eventually fuse real world physical spaces with virtual ‘metaverses’ enhancing or even revolutionising performance, communication and production. This is one future of AV.