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Data sculpture illustrates the cycle of traffic flows and air quality in Mall of Tripla

What does data look and sound like? The installation in the Mall of Tripla, Helsinki calls visitors for interaction.
Data Sculpture by Department of Media for Mall of Tripla shows the cyclic data on air quality and traffic flows in the shopping centre
Photo: Sonya Mantere

Interactive data sculpture, The Pulse of Tripla, is created by Aalto University’s students and teachers of Sound in New Media and Visual Communications Design program. It offers an audiovisual experience demonstrating cyclic changes in air quality in the Mall of Tripla. A 24-hour clock which plots different indicators of air quality whilst simultaneously converting their values into music.

The installation activates by movement: the visitor can use and play it by moving closer and farther. The information is displayed both as colors on a ring screen and as sounds. Cyclicality is emphasized: lunch time and the end of working hours are clearly visible as spikes.

The work utilizes indoor air measurement data from the Mall of Tripla compiled using the MegaSense platform developed by the University of Helsinki. The sensors for measuring air quality use the 5G network and were installed in the Mall of Tripla in collaboration with the City of Helsinki, Mall of Tripla, YIT and Telia. They collected data on indoor air quality, sound pressure and people flow from June to September, 2020.

Air quality information is becoming increasingly important and is also of interest to city dwellers. However, presenting complex information in a tangible way is challenging.

‘Our interest lies in how information generated in urban environment can be conceptualized. We want to encourage to bringing it up and using in business and new services, perhaps in surprising ways’, says Kalle Toivonen, Senior Specialist in smart city solutions at the City of Helsinki.

‘Creative solutions make it possible to present otherwise difficult-to-understand entities. With the help of an installation created by our multidisciplinary team, anyone can get hold of the topic through an audiovisual experience’, says Professor Rupesh Vyas from Aalto University.

‘It’s interesting to be involved in this kind of new project that combines data related to people’s behavior, smart properties and the urban environment, presenting them in a creative way. The Mall of Tripla is a modern shopping center and trend setter in many areas. That is why it is very interesting to serve as a platform for new research on information related to the urban environment’, says Kati Kivimäki, Director of the Mall of Tripla's shopping center.

Pulse of Tripla is on display at the Mall of Tripla, Kulttuuriaukio Square, 4th floor until the end of May.

Design team at Aalto University:

Kalle Järvenpää, design and construction
Olli Ketonen, sound design and programming
Koray Tahiroğlu, tutor for sound design
Nicola Cerioli, tutor for data visualization
Rupesh Vyas, supervision and concept design

Contact:

Professor Rupesh Vyas, Aalto University School of Arts, Design and Architecture, [email protected], +35850598803

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