Ars Electronica Futurelab presents Swarm Arena collaborating with NTT, in Tokyo
(Linz, 05.07.2019) In the beginning, there was a shared research interest: How can swarm-based technology be used as a means of communication? Now, Japanese telecommunications company NTT and the Ars Electronica Futurelab are offering an insight into their joint research and presenting hands-on results to the public: a new robotic swarm for art, entertainment and sport. The innovative swarm technology will feature in several performances at the Japanese National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation, Miraikan, in Tokyo between July 4 and 7, 2019.
The robotic swarm, composed of several groundbots, conveys the multifarious aspects of sport spectacles to viewers in a way that completely breaks through the boundaries of a conventional rectangular video format. Performing together with the robotic swarm, modern-day alchemist Akiko Nakayama and musician Ei Wada demonstrate creative possibilities of the application of the swarm technology. It’s sports viewing, re-imagined – designed to revolutionize the way we view and relate to big sport spectacles.
Swarm Arena – New perspectives for art, entertainment and sport
The performances at Miraikan from July 4 to 6, 2019, are part of a joint research project between Japanese telecommunications company NTT and the Ars Electronica Futurelab. While at first, the focus was on drone-based navigation and signage (Swarm Compass, 2017), it quickly shifted to more complex applications of swarm-based technologies using both drones and ground bots (Swarm Arena, 2018). Now, the scope has expanded once again – the Ars Electronica Futurelab and NTT are creating a new kind of public sports viewing using the groundbots, creating a travelling lab for art, sport, and society.
NTT – An expert in telecommunication systems
The Japanese telecommunications company Nippon Telegraph and Telephone (NTT) provides telecommunication services all over Japan, while also conducting research to advance telecommunication systems in general. In the joint research with the Ars Electronica Futurelab, NTT provides the core competences necessary for a performance such as the one at Miraikan – ranging from highly evolved image transmission and information data analysis on sports to new types of interaction design.
Miraikan Tokyo – Japanese National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation
The National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation in Tokyo is hosting the series of performances that offer insight into the robotic swarm research conducted by NTT and the Ars Electronica Futurelab. The performances will take place within a greater exhibit curated by NTT called “Sports Viewing Re-Imagined”, showing possible futures of viewing big sports events.
Ars Electronica Futurelab
The Ars Electronica Futurelab was initiated in 1996 as both a studio and laboratory. Since then, it has been the artistic-scientific think tank, research and development drive of Ars Electronica. Here, the team develops innovative prototypical sketches of the future that serve both as a basis for discussion and an invitation to participate in a broad discourse on topics of relevance to the future. The Ars Electronica Futurelab collaborates with partners from the industry, the creative sector, the arts, academia and education around the world.