Notes from "The Everybody Fluid Engage Brainstorming Meeting"

Alison Benjamin radiocontrolled at
Thu May 7 21:18:18 UTC 2009


This is the idea I brought to the table:

I was reading a ppt presentation last week by Mike Kuniavsky ( and in it he makes an important and
(maybe not always so obvious point) that the benefit of technology in
museums is that it can make artifacts more authentic to visitors.

With that in mind I thought about what seagoing cats do, and how people
could connect with artifacts *about* seagoing cats. They travel on ships
that go all over the world catching mice. Maybe they've been in battles or
maybe they've sailed across important trade routes. Museums tend to attract
a lot of visitors from out-of town, and in general many people will have
traveled to port cities. Seagoing cats have been all over the world, and so
have many of the museum visitors - there is one commonality between the
visitor and the artifact.

How could an engage-infused museum encourage bridging and interaction
between the artifact & the visitor? One goal a visitor might have is to
create a custom tour to see what seagoing cats have been to their cities.

System functions that would need to be in place might be - -

-Allow exhibition designers to tag exhibits with cities that cats have
sailed to and through;  Also allow a Collections Management System to track
this kind of information

-Communicate to visitors the artifacts they want to see based on the tags
they specify (in this case - "which cats have been to my city?")

-Allow users to specify that they want a tour based on those tags ("I want a
tour based on cats that have sailed through Vancouver").

-Allow users to 'hook' into  collection management system data. This way
information about museum artifacts (e.g. interesting life events, facts,
etc. about cats that have sailed through Vancouver) can be presented.

-Presented related information about artifacts & their context to users
(e.g. links to museum library, bookstore, literature, Website).

The idea behind this exhibit design would be to allow visitors to connect to
the cats/artifacts in a personalized way (I have been here - what seafaring
cats have also been here, and why?).


On Tue, May 5, 2009 at 2:53 PM, Jess Mitchell <jess at> wrote:

> Dear All,
> I'd like to invite you all to a meeting for this Thursday to do some
> brainstorming.
> Here's the scenario:
> The Museum:
> You're on a team at The CATT* Museum (a fictional museum, any similarity
> to is unintended)
> The team is tasked with designing (and creating) an exhibit -- one that
> covers the physical, mobile and web spaces.  One that uses technology in
> interesting ways to tie together the solution while engaging the visitors.
>  The museum is a history museum, focused on the domestic and wild CATT.
>  Museum artifacts include but are not limited to artwork, paintings,
> sculptures, written materials, audio, and video of or related to cats.
> The Exhibit:
> The exhibit we'll be working on is called "Seagoing CATTS" -- for
> some inspiration:
> Use this as a way to structure your thoughts about how you might do the
> following:
> How will you go about doing this exhibit?
> what features will your exhibit have -- think specifically and tie it in
> with artifacts
> functionalities
> kiosks w/ this?
> mobile that displays _________?
> Please bring at least two specific ideas for features of the exhibit you'd
> hope to build as part of the team.  Nothing is too small or silly an idea at
> this point.
> During this brainstorming meeting we'll walkthrough your ideas and
> brainstorm about taking them further and it'll be interesting to see how
> they might fit together.
> This exercise will give us some ideas for early "micro carrots" for
> designers and developers (new to the community and veterans) to start
> working on -- to learn Infusion, grease our creative wheels, and get started
> on building FE.
> To break it down:
> all developers and designers who need to develop a mini-carrot
> bring one or two ideas for the exhibit
> no matter how mundane and crazy
> technologically supported ideas -- think technology
> or intersection thereof (web, physical, mobile)
> goal: brainstorm, apply some of information we have been gathering from the
> resources on FE, be creative.
> * CATT is an alternate spelling of cat that some members of Fluid use to
> refer to our feline friends.
> See you in
> Best,
> Jess
>    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
> Jess Mitchell
> Boston, MA, USA
> Project Manager / Fluid Project
> jess at
> / w / 617.326.7753  / c / 919.599.5378
> jabber: jessmitchell at
> ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
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