As part of the Gigabit Bristol Programme and the Bristol Is Open initiative, Bristol City Council funded an upgrade of At Bristol planetarium as a venue for immersive visualisations of city data.
The overall mission is to engage the public, both as makers and consumers of data visualization content, in the importance of open data and its uses in creating a smart city.
Future Cities Catapult worked with Bristol City Council to commission companies to design prototypes to show how this might be achieved.
There are a limited number of suppliers with expertise in visualising data in this way, so the main goal was to understand the design, technical and production challenges of developing media for this format.
Future Cities Catapult advised the council stakeholders on the best approach from a design perspective, and helped to procure the agencies to deliver the content. To do this we ran creative workshops to gather requirements and shape the overall approach.
We recommended a methodology that involved exploring multiple design approaches to evaluate what kind of content performed well in this unique venue. We then turned these requirements into an ‘open call’ to source the companies with the required creative and technical capability to meet the challenge. This included holding workshops with local SMEs.
As a result, Bristol City Council was able to procure and install the technologies required to enable data visualizations to be displayed in the dome. In addition, we ensured that the technology platform is open, and can be developed on by the creative community, using standard digital production tools.