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Museums and the Web

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

26 Treasures mobile audio tour

People's Choice:
1 vote




National Museums Scotland






To accompany our 26 Treasures exhibition we created a mobile-based audio tour on a miniscule budget. Using as much best practice information as we could find, and building on previous experience, we set about developing a series of simple pages on our mobile-optimised website and driving traffic to them via QR Codes placed beside 26 individual objects within the museum. Each page contains an audio recording of a writer reciting a piece that they had composed about these objects.

The aim was to pull together an experience that was available on as many platforms as possible and that used technology in a flexible way. Audio files were hosted and streamed via Audioboo and we used audiojs to generate a simple HTML5 audio player for mobile web browsers that supported it (reverting to Flash for those that didn’t). QR Codes were generated via and bundled for easy tracking.

Within the ‘physical’ museum a printed map-based trail told visitors where the content could be found. Knowing the limitations/lack of understanding of QR Codes we also sought to explain what they were, how to download a reader and what the listener could then expect. Each QR Code was accompanied by a ‘Scan me to listen’ prompt.

Aside from printing, the only other real cost was in getting a professional to record the audio – everything else was resourced internally. The result was an experience that added texture to an exhibition, giving our objects a voice in a whole new way.

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