Future information processing and media technologies will be increasingly more interactive and autonomous. Since 1998 we have constructed 16 prototype interactive multi-media systems that were demonstrated to the public. The most complex of these artefacts was an installation for the Swiss national exhibition Expo.02 called “Ada: Intelligent space”, an 180m2 interactive space embedded in a 400m2 exhibit that has attracted over 550.000 visitors from May until October 2002 (Eng et al, 2003).
Ada has allowed us to investigate both fundamental and applied questions including: large-scale sensory integration in the context of ongoing goal-oriented behavior the construction of the software and hardware technology that allows us to reliably run these large-scale real-world systems and the interaction and communication between humans and artefacts. Currently we are jumping for a single virtual entity to a mixed reality system that will be inhabited by physical and virtual humans together with fully synthetic characters. We have subsequently applied this understanding to the problems of neurorehabilitation and quality of life management.
The main space of Ada
The "Conditining tunnel" that lead into the main space
The Brainarium was a concave area adjacent to the Ada main space from where six windows gave a view into Ada main space. The separating screen surrounding the Ada main space consisted of semi-transparent mirrors, allowing visitors to the Brainarium to see into the main space but not the reverse. The ledge below the windows was slanted at ∼30◦ and six 24" LCD monitors were inset into it. To the top right of each screen was an array of four language selection buttons. The purpose of the Brainarium was to foster the understanding of the Ada system.