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Say When

Page history last edited by Cathryn Goodwin 9 years, 11 months ago

Paper title: Say When: Deciding How Much is Too Much in a Museum Mobile Tour

 

In brief:

Early in 2010, SFMOMA launched a brand new mobile multimedia tour on the iPod Touch, which brings audio and video commentary from artists, curators and guests right to the visitor’s fingertips. But how much information is too much? We continue to listen for clues some fundamental questions: what types of content do our visitors most want, and how do we make it available without overwhelming the user? We will share our findings from the analysis of tracking data and from focus groups conducted at SFMOMA both before and after the launch of the mobile tour. The results of this research are likely to be equally useful to museums of all disciplines, small and large.

 

Abstract:

 

Though museum audio tours have existed for decades, the recent proliferation of mobile platforms has expanded the range of mobile experiences available as well as the methods of delivering them. These feature-laden consumer devices are rapidly changing the way we think about delivering content in museums.

 

Early in 2010, SFMOMA launched a brand new mobile multimedia tour on the iPod Touch, which brings audio and video commentary from artists, curators and guests right to the visitor’s fingertips. The tour, called Making Sense of Modern Art Mobile (or MSOMA Mobile), launched with more than five hours of content and continues to grow.

 

Meanwhile, we know we must be sensitive to the balance between the visitor’s need for information and the risk of overload. While we have opted to use the device’s on-board storage capacity rather than tap into the universe of data which could be made available via WiFi, still, we run the risk of offering — as one visitor succinctly put it — “TMI”!

 

How much information is too much? We continue to listen for clues to try answering some fundamental questions: what types of content do our visitors most want, and how do we make it available without overwhelming the user? To address these questions, SFMOMA is analyzing usage data collected on its fleet of 200 iPod Touches to try to better understand where visitors reach their limit.

 

In the session, we will share our findings from the analysis of tracking data and from focus groups conducted at SFMOMA both before and after the launch of the mobile tour. The results of this research are likely to be equally useful to museums of all disciplines, small and large.

 

 

Session Info:

 

  • Type: Individual Paper
  • Keywords: mobile, iPhone, iPod Touch, evaluation,
  • Relevance: For all audiences working with mobile content

 

Presenter:

 

Tim Svenonius, Producer, Interactive Educational Technologies, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art

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