Columbia Shipmanagement turns CEO into hologram for remote meeting
A new way of conducting remote meetings and training might now be possible thanks to the use of hologram technology, as Columbia Shipmanagement demonstrated this week.
Mark O’Neil, the CEO and president of the ship management company addressed an audience in Manila as a hologram beamed from the Limassol offices of OneLearn Global, 5,534 miles away.
Mark O’Neil was able to appear as a life-size, 3D hologram, appearing in 4K resolution and able to talk to, see and hear the people who were physically attending the event in Manila, even though he was six time zones away.
CSM is a firm believer in the power of digitalisation and has invested in this portal technology to not only elevate its training capability to new levels, but to replace excessive global travel with hologram-led international business meetings to reduce its environmental impact.
“The equipment we use is high tech but very portable and takes the whole issue of speaker contributions to conferences or business meetings to a completely different level. A fleet director in one part of the world can mentor ships’ officers attending a conference in another, while customers and suppliers can have more intuitive and interactive meetings without having to step on a plane and fly thousands of miles to a meeting. This is ‘tomorrow’s world’ happening today and we are delighted to be able to make it a reality,” explained Mr O’Neil.
But as Capt Faouzi Fradi, CSM group director crewing and training, explained, while the kit can take a day to assemble, it can be easily packed away and moved to a different site, opening up endless opportunities for high-level manager participation. “The technology is exciting, and we will be looking to implement it very soon in the New Year. There is next to no latency or delay to the transmission and the hologram is so lifelike you would think the person was actually in the room with you,” he said.
“But there is a serious side to all of this. By using this technology, anyone who needs experts or senior management attend meetings can have them beamed in. We used to fly people to Manila for £3K plus the cost of a hotel and the loss of a few days travel, but now they can contribute without leaving their country. Even experts who are unable to travel can be beamed in. It takes the ‘meeting’ concept to a new level. And that is what is so exciting about it all. Also, we are delighted to be working with Nautilus as they are a modern, fully equipped simulator and training centre in Manila,” he said.