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DigiCULT
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29
H
ANDSCAPE
: I
NVESTIGATING
M
OBILE
C
OMPUTING
IN
M
USEUMS
on the trees that have been collected
and planted in the Garden throughout
its history. The Kew exper ience will
also address the issues of context
awareness and overlay of media. The
application will utilise GPS technology,
scientific data from the Garden's tree
database, and interviews with scientists,
and will explore some new ways of
extending the exper ience through a
post-Garden visit scenar io.
ASSESSMENT TOOL
U
sing a var iety of media,
exercises, data collection
techniques, and analysis, the project
team will produce a self-assessment
tool for the community. The tool will
emphasise the iterative design and evalu-
ation process, and it will attempt to
demonstrate how a clear understan-
ding of the relationship between
expectations, experiences, and physical
environments are fundamental to the
SCENARIO TESTING
T
he project team
is currently
working with the
Smithsonian Amer ican
Art Museum and the
Royal Botanic Gardens,
Kew, on site-specific
projects to test scenar ios
against visitor exper ien-
ce issues. Working with
the key project themes
(as noted above), specific application
scenar ios will be developed, tested
and evaluated for their effectiveness
in integrating handheld technology
into the visitor exper ience and its
success in meeting visitor expecta-
tions.
T
he Smithsonian Amer ican Art
Museum (SAAM) project
focuses on the issues of context
awareness, overlay of tangible media,
augmentation of exper ience, and
filter ing/organising. The SAAM
handheld application is being devel-
oped for use in the contemporary
craft galler ies at the Renwick Gallery
in Washington, DC, and includes edu-
cational components dealing with
mater ials, process, technique, encoun-
ters with artists, and secrets of the
objects, a unique approach to con-
necting visitors with facets of the
objects hidden from view.
T
he Kew project will take place
out-of-doors, and will focus
H
andscape is a research project
concerned with explor ing
potential use scenar ios for mobile
(hand held) computing in museum
environments. The project is funded
by a grant from Intel Corporation.
Managed by Angela Spinazze, the
grant is administered by the CIMI
consortium, with research led by
Professor Ger i Gay, Director of the
Human Computer Interaction Group
(HCI) at Cornell University. The
project is in its second year.
S
ix themes have emerged from
initial investigations into user,
designer and administrator expecta-
tions of mobile computing experiences
in museums (for further infor mation
about Year One research, please con-
sult the project pages on the CIMI
Web site). The themes include:
- context awareness;
- social recommendation;
- overlay of tangible media;
- augmentation of exper ience
through use of multiple media;
- filter ing/organising;
- extending the exper ience (pre- and
post-museum visit).
I
n order to explore these themes
in greater detail, the project
team will work in several different
areas in the course of 2003-2004,
with deliverables that include scena-
r io testing, assessment tool develop-
ment, and the continued observation
of related community take-up
activities.
B
Y
A
N G E L A
S
P I N A Z Z E
, ATSPIN C
O N S U LT I N G