Friday, February 02, 2007

Weekly Tour 1/27/2007 - 2/2/2007

There was a lively offline discussion with the DigComm users on the new (im)potency of video online. As a follow-up to that discussion - this week's theme is Images: Moving, Social and Interactive.


  • On the moving image front, there were a couple of great stories this week discussing video, YouTube and social networks. Frantic Industries discussed the impact of tagging and bookmarking on the YouTube platform. Supposedly, users can post YouTube videos to networks like Digg and Del.icio.us through the click of an icon. This functionality points to the ever-increasing social tendancies of images and videos on the web.

    Perhaps the pressure for increased social value, reference and meaning, is making up for the otherwise short attention span of most web video. Editorializing on this trend, two great articles discussed the democratizing (or shallowing) content model of YouTube - discussed here on Wired and here on O'Reilly.

  • On the interactive front, there was an interesting amount of buzz related to the Bumptop desktop prototype released this week on the web and specifically featured on YouTube. Link Though this project is just in its infancy, the redesign of the user interfaces for desktops will most likely translate sooner or later to other platforms - website, phones and PDA's. For Museums, the question will be whether better, more natural interfaces hinder or help the development of educational and interpretive content on digital devices. Does handheld technology as "life's remote control" (as envisioned in Howard Rheingold's book Smart Mobs) free the Museum to explore new methods of interaction or present yet another possibility and budget drain on already strapped technology departments? Hype versus reality on this front - time will tell.

  • Another entry on this interactivity front, the San Jose Tech Museum has begun exploring DAVE, a next generation handheld to be used in their tours, guides, displays and exhibitions. Can't waite to see whether this type of interactive handheld is paired with RFID and other smart tags to increase accessbility and content retention for visitors in Museums.

  • One final note: according to the Associated Press, the Louvre in Paris set attendance record for the 2006 calendar year. How did they do it? Engaging programming, winning exhibitions and publicly relevant interpretive and marketing strategies. It isn't all technology which is a wonderful thing - otherwise the technology would be meaningless - a vessel containing nothing.

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