Thursday, April 10, 2008

Sebastian Chan - Powerhouse Museum in Sydney - MW2008

Sebastian Chan - Powerhouse Museum in Sydney, MW2008 Notes in Chaos
94 slides / 12 secs per slide / As mixing data / As dealing with reality

Seb Chan, "some people think a web site should be neat... a lot of neat, and a lot of order. But if you look closely at order, there is a chaos. Our sites at the macro level look modular, and at the micro level resemble favelas." How to agree on standards, when we haven't made anything yet? We can start with museum calendars... because really, how hard can calendars really be in 2008?


solution: scape > aggregated third party feed, > nice backend > slapped over a "trust-o-meter" > Frontend interface with microformats RSS+ GeoRSS+ Django... But how can we really be certain that any of this is headed in the right direction?


If you Query Wikipedia > "show me all the sitcoms set in NYC," then all the sitcomes set in NYC are pulled up. So why can't we do this in museums?

Google 2007... we still do this by hand... Each of us are creating multiple collection records...
biographies, by (other) hands, crowdsource using our audiences ... resulting in an aha-moment: so maybe tags are our answer! Natch.

There is valuable data created by our users - like tags, that help with over 11.2 million successful searches per day, misspelled is auto-corrected. But we are often faced with "Nothing Found. Did You Mean the Following?" Reuters bought out ClearForest, which essentially is a text analysis tool to wipe over your entire collection.


Calais creates tags that are now meta-data... and now begs the question, who creates meta-data? Librarians can create meta-data, but they're aren't that many who are doing this now. Do we still need to clean all of our data by hand? Essentially, we are left to parse and prune, parse and prune.

About NSW beta: a locality explorer in Sydney that maps the news over ariel images found on the web, cross-referenced with heritage museums and wikipedia pages. When one clicks on "read more," you get the object from the Heritage Trust site. One can pull up art, the bios of the artists, and then 5 years from now, it can be sent to you again.

What To Do With New Media Art? MW2008 - Moderated by Rich Cherry

Frankie Roberto, Science Museum - London

And, what to do when you hav Partial Data and Dodgy Data
... you have to assume that the data is 'Good Enough' > assez bon

Object Data Wiki - science museum in london

1. Getting It = Screen Shape
as we get better and nice semanic html, it becomes easier to extract the

Getting it - FOI request, a Freedom of Information Request
(Frankie asked, and UK museums said go for it and its on your head...)

Mapping the Logic

Museum x >> Museum Y

Presenting Objects Online
tags, descriptions, some other fields to describe what you've got in your collection
but you don't get any sense of the collection, of the warehouse storage works, and groupings of things

British Museum - said no, it would take 3-4 days and 1000 pounds
Museum of London - nothing, no word back
National Gallery - nothing, no word
National Maritime Museum - Yes
National Museums Liverpool - no word
National Portrait - yes, and its already on our website (license to screenscrape)
Natural - they had 70 million specimens, quite a relief that they said no
Royal Armories - Yes
Sir John Soane Museum - Yes, and gave him a word document
Tate Galleries - no word
Wallace Collection - no
V&A - yes, they sent him 2.9 GB XML file on DVD

Data Mapping:
Who collected it? [curator or collector]
What was it that was collected? [mapping procedures of items]
Where [need a nice defined list of countries. he collected 1,496 unique place_made strings, such as "probably Italy or England" isn't so helpful, or "Arabia," need to stick with the ISO Country list]
When was it collected? [1905, or 1935-04 take the first year, but 12/03/96... just take "1996" instead of 1896, ah geez]
How was it collected? [for example, 'donation,' or 'in lieu of taxes']


Pitt Rivers Museum - great stuff for breaking down a collection and defined terms created by My Society - much more accessible website about UK's local MPs... in a way that is interesting and engaging. who they vote how they vote / where they spend...

[could just drop in a collector...]

- All objects are counted equally
- Photographs?
- Add user interactions
- Data from more museums?
- sharing the data. clean data as well as the original source

And an object wiki, creative commons license

The API as Curator - MW2008

The API as Curator... and mood music by Aaron

William Gibson / Barbara Tuchman / Mike Migurski from Stamen and the Elastic Mind exhibit at SFMoMA

Printmaking and the history of collaboration
Master printers know more about the minutia than you do.

Threadless, Nude No More... making money hand over fist for a t-shirt company, and apparently the only way to make money on the web.
Math is hard...

Peter Samis - SFMoMA MW2008 Olafur Eliasson

SFMoMA exhibition in Fall 2007 of Olafur Eliasson's show, "Take Your Time."

Perceptual stimular and change agents in the show, and thinking
(Note: Just about everyone in this room is familiar with Olafur Eliasson's work.)

'Museums that collecting objects from reality and preserving them in a container and somewhat outside of reality [...] We still have to reinforce the fact that we are looking at them from where we are today.'

Sadly, this is radical stance on what's going on in museums today = Museum reality does not TRUMP visitor perspective.

Eliasson: "Don't think my work is about my work, my work is about you."

- Seeing Yourself Seeing
- Art as Experiment
- Your Experience is Individual
- Why Take Your Time?

Beauty, 1993 (spray of water and spotlight, a rainbow appears)
And some blogger post:


Stats: 2% didn't comment, which means a 98% of lurkers...
understanding visitors motivations, entrance naratives, evaluating the "visual velcro effect" of various artworks that stay with people for a very long time, versus the ones that they look at and then they want to move on.

This is very telling about what KIND of artworks are connecting with our viewers...

What is the value of opinions?
...more to the point: who the heck in our museum is interested in the opinion of our audience?

- is it the artist? Olafur was probably more interested in people who were thinking critically about the work but not about whether they liked it

- the curators? Nope, they are only interested in what the artist think
- the director? Not really, he's too busy to think about anything besides fundraising

- the marketing department? yes, they are interested, but they are the ones that really have to care

And almost none of them actually read or checked the blog.

And then, the visitors were the only ones left in the room.

To close the loop, that is what docents do, when they actually get to talk to the visitors.

Nina Simon's Web 2.0
and four key elements of web 2.0
// venue as content platform, not provider
// architecture of participation
// perpetual beta

Where do we get, when we are there? [i.e. Where is "there?"]

When even staff are interested in checking back into what is happening on our site. Ideas?

Shelley Bernstein, Brooklyn Museum MW2008

Blogging at the Brooklyn Museum, in the past year
by Shelley Bernstein

Visitor Video Competition - launched in October 2007
Rules for participation were posted on facebook, online

Banksy came to the Brooklyn Museum and hung his own artwork, he did this at the Met and MoMA in 2005.

She woke up at the morning and saw this video that was submitted in the : "the art thief"
The BMA would never create a video filmed in the galleries about stealing art. Nor would they normally allow visitors to use the museum as a wide open target for videomaking. (Note: they do allow photography in the galleries...)

This is the first major lesson learned: LEARN TO TRUST YOUR AUDIENCE.

More lessons learned: that rules were good, and the more the better. filmmakers stated that the clearer they could be, the more understood they were about what they could and couldn't do.

Getting curators to participate, 300 words (they love word counts) and ask for their personal voice. Also, go to the younger members of the staff as they find it empowering.

Flickr - 900 members connected through the BMA, and nominated ten photographers that were active and committed to "viewing" the collection using their camera lens. BMA photographers portray the objects and holdings in the most neutral way possible, and flickr members do this by suddenly viewing the collection through their own eyes.

The video they created was set to music and stills collected from all the users contributing to the Flickr stream, including images of their public programs, their objects and their images.

The BMA could have done something like this on their own, but by utilizing content generated by users makes it so much richer. And, far more reflective of their audiences.

Facebook (and APIs created for it) ARTSHARE... contributes such as the Met, Walker, Corning Museum of Glass, Powerhouse Museum in Australia

Flickr - it's such an interesting way to get to know someone, that you instantly get an idea of what a person is like based on what they decide to display. This is about giving back.

Four Driving Forces when thinking about developing this
- Openness
- Trust
- Value
- Give

The Wisdom of Crowds, by James Surowiecki

Submit a photograph that represented "your view" of the changing face of Brooklyn.

Received less than 400 submissions, and are now being evaluated by the "crowd"online.
They are being open about their process
They are trusting the audience
They are valueing their opinions, and
They are giving back to the community by hanging the work on the walls of the museum.

Day 1 - Museums and the Web, MW2008 Opening Plenary

Michael Geist - Keynote speaker
Ottowa, Canada

Author of "In the Public Interest: The Future of Canadian Copyright Law"

So, this is the Internet in 2008:

PostSecret, in its book and gallery form
Lonelygirl15 on Youtube, and the old debate over whether it was a professional production or a girl's actual experiences (and consequently, )
Tetes a Claques in Canada

Flickr - passed the 2 billion photos mark, succeeded by Facebook

Creative Commons, Larry Lezig and the all rights reserved world

WikiTravel - local blogger consult in Montreal, 33,000 city destination guides, community and collaboratively created, and now using to make printed books for travelers to carry with them. Lagtime is one month for print guides, ordered online at lulu. awesome

Welcome to the Enclopedia of Life, ambitiously cataloging all life forms on the planet over the next ten years

Global Voices, started Ethan Zuckerman from Harvard

ReCaptcha, out of Carnegie Mellon

iOptOut - to complement the "do not call" list to create and manage to prevent polling companies from using your personal phone number, plus a place to post other places to do the same for mail

LibriVox - read a chapter or two and record in MP3 format to upload as an audiobook

MIT Open CourseWare - finished four years ahead of schedule, plus podcasts and webcasts
and the MIT Open CourseWare Consortia

Public Library of Science (PLOS) - Online journal publishing for people that go on to be Noble prize winners

Open Medicine - online open medicine journal to facilitate dissemination of high quality health research; to promote international dialogue and promote health

Google Book Search, Alouette Canada

JoomLa - Opensource software to manage content (firefox open source banner for the community)

Other presentations, McCord Museum and the 100,000 images online of early Canada

Public Broadcasters Search Engines - used by Canada's industry minister

BoingBoing, a directory of wonderful things by Cory Doctorow

YouTube Video - first political 1984 image of the Apple commercial of Hillary, but replaced by the President of Tunisia, created four years before the one that generated national attention

The Internet in 2018... Looking Ahead?

From a policy perspective, seven areas of change:
1. - broadband for all. the price of admission should be free and universal.
2. - network neutrality. no more focus on a multi-tiered structure that preferences content where you pay to play, or else find yourself on the slow lane. amazon and ebay have been most vocal about this issue.
3. - intermediary liability, and third-party content
4. - privacy, and ensuring that we have security bridge disclosure information
5. - fair dealing / fair use, and the balance between user and creator rights (over-protecting vs under-protecting that should be interpreted more broadly. for instance, parody is not covered.)
6. - digital rights management: and that DRMCA legislation in the US has a direct impact in our fair use rights, including reviews or printed criticisms and turns them into infringement offenses. This affects everybody.
7. - public domain, and not just talk the talk but walk the walk, as well. if we argue for on no more than a cost-recovery basis.

When we think about 2018, the government

Future keynote speakers that I'd like to see at MWW2008 is Henry Jenkins from MIT. He'd reframe the trope of checking the basal temperature of the internet in 2008 and explode it off the wall. And he'd actually frame opinions about why the things that are happening on the web are happening at all. I wonder why museums don't try and convince him to speak out into our territory more.