History or His-Story: Reflections on Interactive Museum Exhibit Design

By Anthony Whitehead and Fred Sebastian.

Published by The Design Collection

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

The design of interactive museum exhibits presents an interesting set of design issues above and beyond the typical technical and artistic design issues. The fact that the setting has an educational intent yet must also be free of tedium makes choices of medium interesting, if not difficult. In this work we present our experiences and findings of the design constraints that arose during our development of a interactive museum exhibit that was, effectively, an historical simulation. Outside the scope of the typical design issues that one would encounter developing any interactive application, we found a number of pedagogical pitfalls and historical hurdles arose while trying to portray the past. This work elucidates our experience and provides guidelines for other designers of interactive museum ex-hibits, in particular historical-based exhibits, to consider in their future work.

Keywords: Interactive Media Design, Museum Exhibit Design, Educational Game Environments

Design Principles and Practices: An International Journal, Volume 4, Issue 1, pp.453-464. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 806.736KB).

Dr. Anthony Whitehead

Director, School of Information Technology, Carleton University, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

Anthony Whitehead is a Professor in the Interactive Multimedia & Design Program, and Director of, the Carleton University School of Information Technology. He received a Bachelor of Computer Science from Carleton University in 1996, and his Ph.D. degree (also from Carleton University) in 2004. Between the degrees, he worked in the entertainment technologies industry in southern California. He and his research team has devised the Sensor Network for Active Play (SNAP) system that was showcased at E3 in 2009. His current research focus is on entertainment technologies and personal space sensor networks from a human computer interaction view and targeted towards active entertainment applications.

Fred Sebastian

Professor, School of Information Technology, Algonquin College, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

Fred Sebastian is an award-winning Illustrator and Designer within Industry whose work has been published throughout the world most notably in the New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Washington Post, Canadian Living, and Bon Appetit. In 1994, he won the Studio magazine Merit award for Excellence in Creativity, and in 2000, he won the International Editorial Cartoon Competition on Press Freedom. A graduate from Carleton University with Distinction, he was awarded the President’s Medal. He also graduated Cum Laude from the University of Ottawa with a Baccalaureate of Education. He is a Professor within the Interior Design, Bachelor of Information Technology, and Professional Illustration programs in the School of Media and Design at Algonquin College.

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