Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Useless application of video walls

There is an increase in the application of large screen presentations of process information in airport operations control rooms. In addition to the standard screens on the operators' station, the control rooms are equipped with one or more video walls or large sized screens, displaying a summary of the process being supervised.

Often these overview displays look impressive and sophisticated. They surely contribute to a high tech appearance of the control room. However, further consideration may reveal that an overview display is a costly, often quite useless addition to the standard desktop work stations. See the following example where the center video wall continuously shows a Windows error message.

To be fair, there are a few applications of video walls in airport operation control centers, like to provide a common situational awareness to both controllers and visiting public or to highlight an area to focus on an issue for a specific group. One of the key success factors will be the layout design and the information design on the video wall, both derived from what the control center is aimed at achieving.

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