Museums and the Web

An annual conference exploring the social, cultural, design, technological, economic, and organizational issues of culture, science and heritage on-line.

You are hereMW / Cultural Visit Memory: The Visite+ System Personalization and Cultural Visit Tracking Site

Cultural Visit Memory: The Visite+ System Personalization and Cultural Visit Tracking Site

TitleCultural Visit Memory: The Visite+ System Personalization and Cultural Visit Tracking Site
Publication TypeConference Paper
Year of Publication2005
AuthorsTopalian, R.
Secondary TitleMuseums and the Web 2005: Proceedings
Conference Start DateApril 13-16
PublisherArchives & Museum Informatics
Place PublishedVancouver, British Columbia, Canada
EditorTrant, J., & Bearman D.
Keywordsinnovation, marketing, personalization, post-visit, visit

The Interactivity and Multimedia Department at the Cité des Sciences et de l'Industrie has developed, in close association with the Laboratoire Communication, Culture et Société (C2SO) at the École Normale Supérieure, Lyon, a system of visit personalization called Visite+. We propose the creation of a personal Web site (a cyberlog of the visit) for all visitors, providing them with a record of their paths at the exhibition, their results at activities (photos, quizzes, etc.), and complete exhibition contents and complementary resources (documents, dossiers, links, etc.). Visitors can access all of their visits on a single portal. The aim is to free visitors from some of the spatial and temporal constraints involved in museum visits, and to do so in a way that corresponds to a number of clearly identified expectations and practices (preparing visits; bringing some of the contents home to reduce the ephemeral, accidental dimension of the visit; reliving, verifying, and sharing the visit experience; making full use of visits in classrooms for teachers, etc.). The system enables the museum to considerably strengthen its relationship with its public using an innovative basis that consists of accompanying visitors in their personal practices. After three years of experimentation, during which time 104,000 Web sites have been created for nearly 100,000 visitors, we at the Cité have learned a number of lessons that we would like to share with others. We are interested in broadening the network of cultural institutions proposing a personalized approach like Visite+. Grouping institutions interested in this approach on a single platform would enable us to shift the focus from the individual institution to individual visitors and their cultural practices, which include a variety of institutions. The aim of this platform is to foster exchanges between professionals and create a portal of participating institutions. In this way visitors can access their personalized Visite+ cyberlogs from each institution's site and find an ongoing record of their path in all participating museums; and institutions can tailor their offer to a public made up exclusively of exhibition visitors.