Entries are a single interactive kiosk in a gallery, visitor center or other public space.
Jury Chair: Julia Shildmyer-Heighway
Director of Content Services, Center for Interactive Learning and Collaboration (CILC)
Gold: UMMA’s DialogTable
University of Michigan Museum of Art and Kinecity & Night Kitchen Interactive
Judges said: With the creation of the DialogTable, UMMA positions itself not only as a wonderful repository and guardian of art, but as a dynamic forum for public engagement and discussion. The infusion of layered multimedia interpretation; which integrates still images, videos, and narratives, provides an experience tailor made to the user. The opportunities for social interaction and exploration make this an exhibit which creates connections that cross curricular, geographic, and socioeconomic boundaries. The judges also greatly appreciated the kiosk being placed in an area that is accessible long after the museum is closed for the day.
Producers said: The UMMA DialogTable is a dynamic new interactive storytelling and social learning tool located in the Vertical Gallery of the University of Michigan Museum of Art’s new Maxine and Stuart Frankel and the Frankel Family Wing. The DialogTable aims to engage UMMA’s audiences with art and ideas, prompting new conversations and creative connections within the context of a model for the museum as an accessible, exciting, shared space that continues to challenge its visitors to learn, grow, and rethink. The Table is located in the extended-hours zone of the Museum (open from 8 a.m. until 10 p.m.), allowing visitors lively engagement with UMMA’s collections well after the galleries are closed. Nearly 150 people of widely diverse backgrounds and experiences have already contributed to the rich, multifaceted, multidisciplinary content (including the Table’s initial 32 two- to three-minute movies) and the interface development through working teams, consultancies, and focus groups.
Sincere thanks to our partners, the talented interactive firms Kinecity and Night Kitchen, and evaluators Audience Focus, and to the Institute of Museum and Library Services and the Getty Foundation, for their invaluable support of the DialogTable and other new and innovative projects that further individual museums and the field as a whole.
Interactive Floor Plan, Art Institute of Chicago
Judges said: One of the biggest deterrents to a museum visitor’s experience being positive is wayfinding. The Art Institute of Chicago has developed a wonderfully intuitive tool which not only guides visitors through the building; it allows them to personalize the experience based on their own interests and curiosity. The touchscreen interface is engaging, simple to use, and well-organized. The RSS feed, which enables special events to seamlessly be updated daily, is a powerful marketing tool. The depth of clarity and Spanish inclusion is much appreciated. Encountering the kiosk is akin to having your own personal museum concierge.
Producers said: Pathfinder, the Art Institute of Chicago’s interactive touch-screen floor plan, is a wayfinding tool designed to help on-site and online visitors discover and locate artworks, exhibitions, amenities, and daily events at the museum. To assist visitors in planning their visit, Pathfinder provides directional paths, offering the option to choose the most accessible route. Pulling information from the museum’s internal information management system and online calendar, Pathfinder enables visitors to find answers to the most common questions: What does the museum have for me to see and do? Where are the galleries with artworks that interest me? How do I get to these places?
Additionally, Pathfinder currently supports screen navigation for both English and Spanish speakers. Online visitors have the additional opportunity to virtually “wander” through many galleries via high-definition 360-degree panoramic views of the galleries and can access online artwork records for more information. With these features and more, Pathfinder offers a new a way of accessing and exploring the museum.
BRONZE: Waves: The Electromagnetic Spectrum Multi-touch Table
Adventure Science Center and Ideum
Judges said: The Adventure Science Center has discovered how to take content, which can easily be misinterpreted or hard to understand, and make it exciting and interactive. The Electromagnetic Spectrum provides visual connections which make the content more relevant and personal. The touchscreen, multi-user format easily promotes conversation and dialog creating a social experience which will fascinate the non-scientific and casual visitor. This is a strong adaptive use of new technology.
Producers said: The electromagnetic spectrum multitouch, mulituser table exhibit is a digital representation of the EM spectrum from radio waves to gamma rays. A custom high-resolution, ultra-wide format multitouch table accommodates several visitors at once, as they can view images in different wavelengths.
The table has a 100″ surface and an 86″ viewable area with a super-wide 16:5 aspect ratio. The images change in real-time as they are moved across the table, allowing visitors to see how the object can be perceived differently in each wavelength of the EM spectrum.
HONORABLE MENTION: Sun Dagger Explorer
New Mexico Museum of Natural History & Science and Solstice Project & Alan Price, The Ohio State University
Judges said: The combination of the detail accuracy and stunning content makes this interactive kiosk shine. The subject matter presentation is extremely compelling. The depth of interaction with the solstice based pieces and astronomical achievements of the ancient culture provide an in-depth experience with a physical location closed to public visitation. The jury was impressed with the detailed digital recreation of this archaeologically significant site.
Producers said: The Sun Dagger Explorer is an accurate, interactive digital recreation of a 1000-year-old celestial calendar found in Chaco Canyon in northwest New Mexico. Using a set of intuitive controls, visitors can explore a high-resolution 3D model (made from a laser scan of the original Sun Dagger site) effortlessly moving through space and speeding through time to see how light passing through carefully-aligned rock slabs and onto spiral petroglyphs mark solstices, equinoxes, and other solar and lunar events. This interactive kiosk sits just outside the Museum’s planetarium, emphasizing the long history of astronomy in the southwestern U.S.
The Sun Dagger Explorer software was designed and programmed by Alan Price at the Ohio State University’s Advanced Computing Center for the Arts and Design, based on research by Anna Sofaer of the Solstice Project and utilizing laser scans of the Sun Dagger site made by Western Mapping, Inc. The kiosk implementation was created by a partnership between the Solstice Project, Alan Price, and the New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science.
Ben Bailes, The Morgan Library & Museum
Kate Haley Goldman, Senior Research Associate, Institute for Learning Innovation
Tom Kraemer, Principal and Senior Designer, Kraemer Design & Production
Paul Richard, President, smallEXHIBITS.com
John Goehrke, Education Coordinator, Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum
Cathy Burton Beeler, Family Director of Education, Eiteljorg Museum of American Indians & Western Art