Wednesday, October 03, 2007

A beginner's guide to cool museum stuff online

I am really lucky. The folks involved in creating the museum at which I work are interested in the potential of new media for involving the community. But, they don't have as much exposure to the cool kinds of things museums are doing as, say, me! So a couple of weeks ago I put together this sort of "beginner's guide" for one of the professors with whom I work. And I thought I'd share. I think, if you read this, you probably know which applications and institutions I'm the most impressed with, but, hey, why not? :D


The Brooklyn Museum has a great all around approach to new media and community: CLICK

Australia's Powerhouse Museum is doing exciting things with their collections online, not just having them there, but allowing visitors to "tag" the online entries with keywords they find useful: CLICK

Eye Level, blog of the Smithsonian American Art Museum: CLICK

The Walker museum in Minneapolis has 6 blogs and are quite good. I especially like OffCenter and the New Media Initiatives blogs: CLICK

The Science Museum of Minnesota has a pretty cool area called Science Buzz with a blog that posts current science stories, polls, and offers registered users the chance to post at top level. There are also interactive kiosks inside the museum from which visitors can comment: CLICK

The Victoria and Albert has a section on knitting which incorporates their collection, but goes beyond it: CLICK The V&A also have a couple of artist blogs.

That's an overview of some of what's out there. The Powerhouse and Science Buzz are two of the most exciting things, in my opinion. Many museums are podcasting; many are creating facebook groups or profiles; some museums are venturing into Second Life; and some are playing with Twitter. Pretty much, any new application which catches on with a segment of the population, museums are starting to experiment with.

Leslie of had a pretty good series on museums and social networking sites: CLICK

Nina Simon of Museum 2.0 writes very thoughtful and thought provoking posts at her blog: CLICK

Two final things: If you want to look around at museum blogs, has a list of 208 museum and museum-related blogs. And the sidebar of my thesis blog has about 100 museum blogs, not all of which are on


Whatcha think? What did I miss that's supah cool?

Oh! I got up the nerve to submit an abstract to MW2008. It's not really anything new, but I thought it might be an appropriate place to share my thesis research. If it did get accepted, I think I'd put up a new, modified survey to beef up that side of things. I won't be heartbroken if it doesn't make it in, but it'll be pretty nifty if it did. Anywho. I'm hoping to go either way.

1 comment:

Linea Hansen said...

Hey Lynn
It's a good beginner's guide. I thought I wasn't THAT beginner - but I keep on bumping into good blogs (takes ages to read them, should have started years ago). Fortunately it's faster to read the danish ones (smaller country, smaller museums, blogs still not that common in museums. Phew!)
When I'm clicking on the title of your thesis nothing happens. I really want to read it - sounds like it's kind of the same as I'm doing.
Can you update the link? Or send me your thesis (