The Museum of Technologie, Vienna wanted to use the strengths of digital devices to convey their knowledge more efficiently and improve the visitor experience. Throughout this project we created the concept for an app that works in combination with the website and info screens inside the museum and was finally launched in early 2021. Below is the non-designed click dummy that was the outcome of the concept phase.
The Blue Monkeys were hired for the latter and my teammate Alexandra and I started our discovering phase by researching what other museums did and by visiting the museum itself several times, interviewing other visitors and analysing the existing ways of knowledge mediation within the museum.
The museum is very big and despite having mostly positive feedback about the exhibitions, visitors often complained about the information overload and immediately forgetting most of the stuff they read. We felt the same.
Together with the museum's project team, we defined personas and gathered all their significant needs and goals. We then brainstormed possible tools, devices and features that would help them to reach those goals.
These Pictures were taken during other projects, but it looked pretty much the same at the Museum of Technology.
Outside / Crossing / Inside
The first significant realisation was that our digital offer would be able to touch 3 phases of the visitors experience, thus being a "digital outreach" for the museum:
Planning the visit (outside of the museum), arriving/ leaving the museum and the actual visit inside the museum. This realisation helped us to structure the ideas and then to agree on the mist important ones, that we would work on in our concept.
We also talked a lot about knowledge mediation in general. The best experience we and many other interviewed visitors had in the museum were the guided tours. It is proven that the best way to transfer knowledge and make it stick - is to tell a good story.
Equipped with all these gathered insights, I was finally ready to start scribbling!
The museum houses more than 170.000 objects and archives and only a few are actually displayed in the exhibitions. The key element in the concept is to make the knowledge in the museum accessible through stories, combining the displayed objects with the non displayed archives.
After several user tests were made inside the museum, using the clickdummy and the concept was delivered - the Museum entered the second phase of the project. Because the museum is funded by the Austrian government and is subjected to competition law, they were not allowed to work with just one agency on whole project. The agency to develop the app was found in a second tender and we handed the concept over to them. The app was finally released in early 2021.
Parallel to our process another agency conceptualised the museum's new website. Again the museum had to split the project in two separately assigned phases. The Bluemonkeys and I admitted a design draft for the design and development of the website, which unfortunately didn't go through. However, I still like to show it...