Museums and the Web

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

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Going Analog: Translating Virtual Learnings into Real Institutional Change

TitleGoing Analog: Translating Virtual Learnings into Real Institutional Change
Publication TypeConference Paper
Year of Publication2009
AuthorsSimon, N.
Secondary TitleMuseums and the Web 2009. Proceedings
Conference Start DateApril 15-18, 200
PublisherArchives & Museum Informatics
Place PublishedIndianapolis, Indiana, USA
EditorTrant, J., & Bearman D.
Keywordsinnovation, mini-workshop, organizational structure, professional development, social technology, visitors, Web 2.0

Museum technology professionals have spent the last several years advocating for, experimenting with, and expanding the Web presence of museums. We’ve created museum spaces on-line that offer free access to visitors all over the world and increasingly invite visitors to talk with each other, take content away with them, access and remix parts of the collection that aren’t on public display – in short, to do things that aren’t possible in the real museum.But now we should be going in the other direction and applying the methods and lessons of the Web and Web 2.0 to the museum itself. How can museums be more like the Web? How can they be open 24/7? How can visitors customize their experiences? How can museums become places to talk with other visitors and sneak into the most interesting drawers and move things around?This paper advocates for museum Web technology professionals to take a broader view of their roles within their institutions and focus energy on translating their knowledge to the onsite experience. It presents models and case studies for how to do this kind of translation from virtual-to-real space, both strategically (so that curators, directors, and boards can sign on to the vision) and practically.The abstract provides the "why." The mini-workshop will focus on the "how" and "what" of translating from virtual to real.