Interaction Design for Live Events

Start Date: Sep 2009
Project Supervisors: Patrick Olivier and Peter Wright

Live events offer a unique domain for interaction design and research. Many live event environments involve large, complex tasks, performed by teams whose members have a range of skills and experience. In practice, events are time critical and cognitively intensive for the people orchestrating them, and can have a far-reaching effect on their audiences.

There are aspects of this domain that we cannot authentically replicate in a controlled environment such as a laboratory. These aspects drive us to find out whether new types of technologies for interaction can benefit the production of live events.

By designing and implementing specific interventions for teams in some areas of live event production, I aim to build a case for collaborative interaction design practice for live event technology. By getting involved with real production teams, we can bring together interaction techniques and designs that reduce cognitive load, facilitate creativity and allow for bigger and better performances.

We are using creativity as a framework for designing and measuring success in various case studies that involve deploying prototype technology in real world event scenarios. These prototypes include:

Media Crate, intended to help production teams organise their workflow more easily and as the situation requires it,

NUILight (formerly Thor DMX: Lighting Control Suite), to bridge the gap between a director’s vision for the lighting of a set and the knowledge of the technicians,

BBC StoryCrate, which enables the organisation of film clips on a storyboard as soon as they are recorded,

Production Crate, a system for production management during conferences.

Digital material availability: is a site specifically for the interactive lighting project.