DC Comic’s charismatic superhero, Batman, is renowned for utilising cutting-edge technology to fight crime in the fictional Gotham City. Many of the technologies presented in the comic book series, which dates back to the late 1930s, were nothing more than science fiction only a decade ago. However, with the advent of the digital revolution and rapid developments in professional AV technology, much of what was once fiction is now fact.
Professional AV technologist and technophile, Chaz Neilson, shares his ideas about which pieces of current AV technology would best suit the multi-millionaire tech-obsessed superhero – including state-of-the-art displays, home automation, 3D hologram technology and video conferencing. Neilson’s fanciful spec for Batman’s home and business may sound somewhat far-fetched at first glance. However, he has included some of the highest-end products from some of the world’s leading AV technology manufacturers to present an installation that would be entirely possible – if only one had an uncapped budget.
Since I was a young fanboy, I’ve always loved superheroes and comic books, my favourite being the billionaire vigilante known as Batman. Part of the reason I was drawn to this DC Comics hero, created by Bob Kane and Bill Finger in 1939, is the new-age, hi-tech gadgets that Batman relies on, both as a highly respected businessman by day and a vigilante superhero by night.
Where many in the superhero genre rely on supernatural ability, Batman – who is known as Bruce Wayne during the day – needs his tech to give him the super-human edge. It is also important to keep in mind that Bruce’s fictional company, Wayne Enterprises, provides him with the financial freedom to pursue his more eccentric interests, and needs to remain profitable. Batman (aka Bruce Wayne), therefore, uses technology in innovative ways to communicate, collaborate, work more efficiently and ensure maximum productivity and problem-solving to fulfil the dual roles of businessman and superhero. I do not doubt that if Gotham City really were home to The Dark Knight, he would be using an arsenal of AV technology that would be highly efficient, reliable and, while not necessarily affordable, would be worthy of the world’s most tech-savvy superhero.
Here follows my pick of AV gadgets which I believe Batman would like, based on efficiency, level of technology, reliability and overall quality and performance.
Barco’s RGB Laser ODLSF brings 3D capability to Batman’s video walls. Powered by the latest RGB laser technology, these video walls deliver previously-unseen brightness levels and vibrant colours in any of Batman’s diverse environments.
Providing twice the brightness in comparison to mainstream LED-lit rear-projection video walls, the RGB laser series allows for operation under daylight or pitch-dark conditions: enough to wake up any cave bat.
With the RGB laser series, Batman takes another giant leap forward concerning reliability. With a lifespan of at least 100,000 hours in eco-mode, Mr Wayne can enjoy a staggering 11.5 years of uninterrupted 24/7 operations. Redundancy of all critical components makes sure nothing is left to chance when it comes to uptime and maintenance. This video wall is the perfect display for the powerful Batcomputer.
MODERN HOME AUTOMATION
Besides inducing fear in his opponents, Batman’s voice can now be used to control his entire mansion, his office and even the Batcave. With Amazon Alexa connected to a Crestron Home Automation system, Bruce can create custom scenes and settings to fit his mood.
Alexa enables Crestron to offer Bruce the next generation of home automation, using his legendary bat-voice. He can ask Alexa to activate presets, such as a ‘morning theme’, and the blinds will open, lights go up, and the shower will start running to ensure optimal temperature. As Mr Wayne will invariably need an above-average level of home security, he could also command Alexa to secure the perimeter if there is an intruder on the property. With Crestron weaved into the fabric of Batman’s home, he can manage lighting, temperature, audio and visual all at the touch of a button or with a simple voice command.
SMART BOARDROOM SOLUTIONS
As telepathy is not a common superpower, WayneTech’s powerful collaboration software would aim to transform the way that superheroes communicate. I would definitely expect to find a T1V ThinkHub at the heart of Wayne Enterprises’ collaboration solution.
ThinkHub is an interactive, multi-touch tool that unifies the moving pieces of collaborative work in real-time. The ThinkHub Canvas is equipped for multi-user, multi-touch control and can expand 20-times the surface area of the physical touchscreen. ThinkHub comes with the annotation toolset, which allows Mr Wayne to draw, erase, snapshot, email or print any content. While collaborating, all members of the Justice League are able to access the annotation toolset and other interactive features to communicate in real-time.
ThinkHub revolutionises the Justice League’s ability to achieve great work, together. Whether they’re running a brainstorming session or strategising against evildoers, wireless collaborative software allows them to engage and cultivate exceptional work in real-time.
NEXT-LEVEL 3D TECHNOLOGY
I believe that Batman would enjoy Euclideon Unlimited’s Hologram Table, which can display digital models of cities or buildings as miniatures, with the ability to then zoom in down to single blades of grass – or even smaller! He can pick up objects and move them around, or prepare holographic presentations to convey ideas to his sidekicks and fellow vigilantes. The holograms can project up to 60cm high or appear to sink a meter into the Table.
The Euclideon Hologram Table uses an existing 3D algorithm known as Unlimited Detail, which makes it one of the most powerful devices on the planet. It can load models from nearly all 3D sources, including design drawings, point cloud data, polygon models, laser scans, photogrammetry and more. Batman can connect it to his local network, The Gotham City Police Department servers or an external hard drive from the Batmobile for quick access to all required data.
Multiple Euclideon Hologram Tables can run models or projects from the one central server, or over the internet using a new streaming technology that allows data of almost any size to load in less than a second, according to the Euclideon’s website. This is crucial when Batman needs to track down enemies – fast – using a 3D hologram map of Gotham City alleyways.
PRIVATE JET VIDEOCONFERENCING
Polycom RealPresence Centro is the conference room system designed for hideouts, training facilities and superhero teams that want more engaged collaboration. RealPresence Centro embraces natural human instincts and advanced collaborative technologies to draw all ego-filled vigilantes together into a powerful, collaborative space, giving everyone equality of contribution regardless of where they are. So, when Mr Wayne is travelling for business, the Centro serves as a video conferencing and content sharing hub that enables collaboration with the Justice League headquarters or with Alfred back at the Batcave.
An intelligent 360° HD PTZ camera captures everyone in the room, whether they are sitting, standing or walking around. Wayne can share content up to 1080p resolution at 60 frames per second – video clips, CAD animations, medical diagrams and much more – as well as easily start, stop and playback any previous session recordings from his third-party gadgets.
Imagine the fear and panic among Batman’s enemies when he projects his Bat-Signal onto a building wall in 4K 3D.
The Christie CP4200 platform is the only 4K DLP solution able to provide Batman with the world’s most brilliant 3D images, the highest level of content security and the most natural adaptability, operation and maintenance. It is fully DCI-compliant and built on extensive cinema experience. Christie’s 4K solution incorporates the proven design concepts of the best technology available. The Christie Solaria Series is ready for the next evolution of Batman’s tactical visual strategy; capable of displaying premium 4K content or 2D/3D 2K High Frame Rate (HFR) feature films and alternative content in its original format. On the other hand, Bruce could re-purpose the unit to enjoy a home theatre experience like no other.