Sonja Hyde-Moyer presented a PDA tour project that she worked on as a project manager while at the Museum of Science. The tour was for the Star Wars: Where Science Meets Imagination exhibition. PDAs were rented to visitors at a price of $4 for children and $6 for adults. Antenna Audio worked with the museum to produce this PDA tour and to provide the hardware.
1) Enhanced visit. Selection of rich media.
2) Extended visit. Personalized web pages based on what they viewed in the museum.
The tour had stops identified by large (about 3.5 inches square) brightly colored stickers with numbers. To improve visibility a consistent location for the sticker in relation to the exhibit was identified. Content was selected by way of a keypad on the PDA. Each long segment of audio or video had an intro clip (about 30 seconds). Users listened to the intro then decided if they wanted to hear/see the whole clip.
The entire program was available both in English and American Sign Language. This was the first time the museum had the option to give a self-guided tour completely in sign language.
2 Content Developers
Exhibit Graphic Designer
Exhibit Web Designer
Exhibit Web Programmer
They worked externally with Antenna Audio to produce the tour. The museum generated the content including defining the stops, conducting interviews, creating the bookmark pages and coordinating the video (from Crawford Media). Antenna created the interface design, did video/audio production, wrote the script and developed the application.
This tour took 6 months to produce. Getting approval from the museum took more than 6 months.
Extending the Visit:
Interesting information during the tour can be bookmarked in PDA. Bookmarks are be retrieved by submitting your email address. Most of the website is new and different than content on the PDA, although movie and audio files were the same. Other resources and links to related online resources were a big part of the new content.
Ideas that got cut:
* Synching the devices to other visitors on demand
* Having the PDA interact with some component in the exhibit itself
10% of visitors rent the tour (that’s high for them)
15% of those users make bookmarks
Stop icons were not obvious enough at first (it’s been fixed now)
Although Hyde-Moyer didn’t want to quote specific budget numbers, a representative from Antenna Audio in the audience estimated a similar program would get a 5 or 6 figure price tag (so that’s something between $10,000 and $999,999 I guess).