An interactive media wall display for a client worth trillions of dollars has earned Madison-based Zebradog an international award.
The elaborate and intricate high-tech exhibit, recently installed on the walls of Saudi Aramco’s North American headquarters in Houston, won top honors for corporate communications in the Digital Screenmedia Association’s annual Industry Excellence contest.
Saudi Aramco is the state-owned oil and natural gas company of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
Based in Dhahran, it owns the world’s largest oil field and has an estimated value of up to $7 trillion, according to the Financial Times.
Titled ”The Saudi Aramco Experience,” the multiscreen installation that Zebradog designed is meant to share the history, operations and global reach of the mega-company with employees and visitors strolling its hallways, Zebradog said.
Founded in 1992, Zebradog has evolved into a hybrid design firm that helps companies and organizations build their brands inside their own physical spaces, using “exhibit architecture” that can function as a kind of “mini-museum,” according to principal and creative director Mark Schmitz.
Recent clients include UW-Madison’s Wisconsin Institutes for Discovery, Aurora Healthcare and the Green Bay Packers.
“It’s really a have-to-be-there-to-experience-it kind of thing,” Schmitz said. “It’s a digital expression in a space that is transformational to the user. It’s not like just looking at a TV on a wall.”
Zebradog created a video for the Saudi Aramco contest entry that shows people using the exhibit’s different screens and highlights its key specifications, including high-resolution graphics, data-driven displays, real-time content update, Web-based content, multi-user learning spaces and smartphone interactivity.
Describing the exhibit as an “immersive media experience,” Zebradog said one of its advances is “gestural controls,” in which a wave of the hand will launch some of the interactive features.
“This installation uses a multitude of cutting-edge interactive technologies,” said Chris Moore, digital media director at Zebradog. “We’re harnessing the next generation of Web-based graphics delivery technology to deliver an amazing and exploratory interactive experience.”
To make the exhibit work, Zebradog layered in different sensors within the installation to allow for motion detection, laser scanning, QR coding for smartphones and infrared-camera tracking.
The exhibit also has built-in capacity for the real-time addition and editing of content by company staff from virtually anywhere in the world, Moore said.
“We’ve negated the need for ongoing programming,” he said. “Anyone in the company, technically savvy or not, can edit and change the entire interface at will.”
Announced May 13 in Dallas, the Digital Screenmedia Association awards are meant to recognize the year’s best technology projects using digital signage, mobile and interactive-kiosk platforms.