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Thoughts on being part of a Digital Revolution

THIS WEEK THE IMMERSE TEAM WENT TO THE DIGITAL REVOLUTION EXHIBITION AT THE BARBICAN, LONDON. JESSICA DRISCOLL SHARES HER THOUGHTS ON THE EXHIBITION AND BEING PART OF A DIGITAL REVOLUTION.

 

From the old school arcade game Pong to the mind control computer game that was controlled by your eyes, Digital Revolution for me was a blast from the past and a peek into the future of technology, art, gaming and popular culture. I remember getting my first computer – a Toshiba MSX – when I was 5 and learning to programme on it and play games. The start of the exhibition with all the retro computers made me laugh because, at 33 years old, I was around at the beginning of this digital revolution. Almost any other retrospective exhibition or museum I have been to has focused on ‘history’ – i.e. something that I was not part of – but this exhibition, from Sonic on the Sega Megadrive to the first webpages that were available on Netscape, took me on quite an emotional journey, using digital technologies as reference points throughout.

 

That’s not to say that it was all about retro computers and old gaming consoles – there were also some really amazing uses of new technology, lasers and robotics which prompted our group from Immerse to think about what would make it as the next ‘big thing’ – like Minecraft, which had a whole wall dedicated to it. A few highlights for me were the Wishing Wall, where you spoke into a pipe and the excellent voice recognition programme wrote your wish on a wall, complete with butterflies that would land on your hand. The new technology used by graffiti artist Tempt was showcased there and made me feel so proud of technology and all of its uses which we are yet to fully imagine. The Treachery of Sanctuary was perhaps the coolest thing I have done in a long time; the way the birds wings made that awesome flapping sound and the pure delight on my colleagues’ faces when the bird silhouette flew upwards and away said it all for me; it felt like being free.

 

So to connect that back a little, it felt great to be working in an industry where technology and education are working in partnership and seeing many manifestations of technology at the exhibition made me think of links that I hadn’t thought of before. Getting inspiration from the thousands of creative minds that contributed to the exhibition has been a powerful motivator for me to make my day more creative and trying to think outside the digital box a little has resulted in some new ideas today!

 

– Jessica Driscoll, Immerse Learning

 

Take a look at some of the photos that the Immerse team took at the exhibition: