International Laser Display Association

International Laser Display Association

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The International Laser Display Association (ILDA) is the worldwide non-profit trade association dedicated to advancing the use of laser
Laser
A laser is a device that emits light through a process of optical amplification based on the stimulated emission of photons. The term "laser" originated as an acronym for Light Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation...

displays in art, entertainment and education. It was founded in August 1986. ILDA sponsors an annual conference and the annual ILDA Awards for artistic and technical achievement in laser shows and displays.

While increasing public awareness of laser light shows, the ILDA is also an association that provides a base for laser display companies. The ILDA does not perform laser light shows itself, but its members primarily consist of laser light show hosts or companies that sell equipment and services. Members of the company can work with each other, not as competitors, but as colleagues with whom they can collaborate. Being associated with ILDA, members can have professional backing that will supply information on new technologies regarding safety issues and improved display performance.

ILDA History


ILDA was founded on August 16, 1986 at their first organizational meeting in Lake Tahoe. Those founding members who are still active as of 2006 are Tom Harman of LaserNet, Jim Martin of Peachtree Lase, Walt Meador of Laser Rentals, Inc., Todd Rogers of Beamin’ Lasers, and Tim Walsh of Laser Spectacles. Originally, the meeting was labeled a gathering of Laser Entertainment Professionals. The first topics that were covered at the meeting were ethical business standards, quality shows, CDRH, insurance, standardization, market overview, mission statement, and many more. The first officers were Ron Goldstein as President, Walt Meador as Secretary, and Tim Walsh as Treasurer. At the end of the meeting, each company was able to show off their own laser light creations. The most memorable display was when Laser Media and Image Engineering performed their collaboration to prove that cooperation between laser light companies was possible.

In April 2006, the ILDA lobbied for the rights to sell lasers for informational display and/or entertainment. This requires persuading the Food and Drug Administration’s Center for Devices and Radiological Health (CDRH; www.FDA.gov/cdrh) to update the administrative process and ensure laser light shows and displays are safer for the public.

Whilst ILDA membership is open to laserists from all countries, ILDA is in essence an American organization that adheres to American laws and standards of safety. Laser safety is imperative where and whenever lasers are being used in public, however laser safety laws in countries with overbearing bureaucractic indulgence i.e. The US inhibit laser professionals from using the technology in a creative fashion.

ILDA Image Transfer Format


The International Laser Display Association developed an image format suitable for interchanging image data between laser controllers and laser fixtures. The information may also be stored as frames, which can then be stored on a computer or other controlling device. Companies in charge of the technical committee of ILDA are LaserMedia, Image Engineering, Foresight, and Laser Dream.

Since ILDA's inception in the early 1990s, profit for large laser display companies, which developed the art form from existing technology, have plummeted. This may be because the technology has become more widespread and affordable

ILDA Annual Conference and Award Ceremony


Every year, the ILDA sponsors a conference and award Ceremony since 1988. These conferences give digital media light show artists the opportunity to network, and showcase their most recent work, while the Award Ceremonies are a place for members to advertise and promote their artistic talent. Companies who have won the most awards are LOBO Electronic, Audio Visual Imagineering, LFI/Laser Fantasy International, Laser Images Inc. (“Laserium”) and Laser Medium. Awards include several different Artistic categories and the Fenning Award, which credits technical achievement. But the highest honor of all is the Career Achievement Award, which is based on years of success, innovation, and over all quality of work.

The ILDA Conference started in 1987 and ILDA members and non-members can both participate. The Conference holds the ILDA Awards announcements, the Advanced Technology Workshop, a performance of light shows called the “Lase-off,” and seminar and business meetings.

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