Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Hidden Tech and Stealth Evaluation?

I'm hoping ExhibiTricks readers might provide some good examples of two interesting types of exhibit/design challenges:

• "Hidden" Tech: by which I mean exhibit components that make clever use of technology by making it integral to the design and essentially invisible to the user.  The exact opposite of the "shiny new toy" syndrome where touch screens (or tablets, or iPads, or projection surfaces) are so out front that it looks like a Best Buy store.

• "Stealth" Evaluation: moving away from people with clipboards (or the digital equivalents) to looking for exhibit design aspects that provide both quantitative and qualitative data about visitor experiences and content acquisition.  An example (pictured above) is the "Would you go to Mars?" digital counter gates. A matching set of gates is placed at both the entrance and exit of the Ontario Science Centre's Facing Mars traveling exhibition. Visitors (and museum staff) can see how opinions might be different before (and after) finding out more details about potential space missions to Mars inside the exhibition.

What are some of your favorite examples of hidden tech and stealth evaluation?  Post your examples (with links to websites and/or images if possible) in the "Comments" section below, or send me an email with more info.

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