Projects: ISO/Mercedes/Simplex

Simplex is the largest of the interactive installations at MB World. The entire system involves 3 synchronised projections controlled by 3 networked PCs controlling the entire show including light and multi-channel sound. It acts as an interactive exploration of the engineers' problems at the time in designing the world's first true car - the Mercedes Simplex.

A series of  problems followed by interactive lessons, topped and tailed with introductory linear media forms the AV show. The show alternates between a 'joined up' world of 3 displays to a local working display. At the key moment at the end of the show the users are treated to the entire display going transparent, revealing behind it a real, immaculate, Mercedes Simplex car. The system also controls the lights focused on the car, which run in sequence to an explanatory set of animations.

The scenes are played out using realtime 3D imaging. The use of realtime 3D allows users to fully explore the 3D scenes in a non-linear way, cutting between and moving cameras around the view using a joystick and button interface.

John Butler designed the 3D models and animation, while Adrian Ward at Signwave built the synch and show-control software.

In situ photos by ISO

Users learn about the problems with early car designs

Input is through a joystick and button

The show resolves and the Dayview glass goes clear - an actual Simplex car sits behind the glass

The system involved light and sound control