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Photos: The laser lightshow reflecting on a decade of UK broadband

Virgin Media mixes a cocktail of light and sound...
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By Natasha Lomas on
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1 of 10 Natasha Lomas/ZDNet

Virgin Media mixes a cocktail of light and sound...

Virgin Media has commissioned a laser lightshow called The Speed of Light to celebrate a decade of broadband connectivity in the UK.

The company claims to have installed the first broadband connection in Blighty back in the year 2000, when ISP NTL - now part of Virgin Media Business - hooked up Mark Bush in Gillingham, Kent.

Photo credit: Natasha Lomas/silicon.com

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2 of 10 Natasha Lomas/ZDNet

The art installation was created by United Visual Artists and is on show in The Barge House exhibition space, close to London's South Bank, until 19 April.

Photo credit: Chris Beaumont/CBS Interactive

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3 of 10 Natasha Lomas/ZDNet

Light in the form of coloured lasers and audioscapes are used to explore themes of communication and modernity. Pictured above is a laser light projection in the first room of the exhibition which encourages visitors to speak into a microphone.

Photo credit: Chris Beaumont/CBS Interactive

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4 of 10 Natasha Lomas/ZDNet

Their voices are recorded and played back in an altered, processed state.

Photo credit: Natasha Lomas/silicon.com

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5 of 10 Natasha Lomas/ZDNet

Recordings taken here are also played back periodically throughout the rest of the exhibition, creating soundscapes containing echoes of things said before.

Photo credit: Natasha Lomas/silicon.com

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6 of 10 Natasha Lomas/ZDNet

Visitors take stairs up to the top of the Barge House, making their way through a series of pitch-black rooms each containing a different light and sound installation.

Photo credit: Natasha Lomas/silicon.com

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The installation in this room resembles a living room - with sofa, coffee table and a TV screen on the left - a space that is also close to cable-TV company Virgin Media's heart.

Photo credit: Chris Beaumont/CBS Interactive

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8 of 10 Natasha Lomas/ZDNet

White and coloured lasers project the length of this room, alternately resembling the strings and frets on the neck of a guitar, while loops of sound inject a cocktail of pre-recorded words.

Virgin Media laser lightshow
Virgin Media laser lightshow
Virgin Media laser lightshow

Photo credit (top): Chris Beaumont/CBS Interactive; (rest): Natasha Lomas/silicon.com

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9 of 10 Natasha Lomas/ZDNet

In another room red lasers create and animate an emoticon - which flickers from a smiling face to a frown in the blink of an eye.

Photo credit: Chris Beaumont/CBS Interactive

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10 of 10 Natasha Lomas/ZDNet

In the last room visitors are treated to a dancing array of coloured lasers mixed with snippets of pre-recorded conversation.

Photo credit: Natasha Lomas/silicon.com

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