Media & Technology on the Go

Evaluation-led Mobile Experience Design

Posted on | January 3, 2010 | 7 Comments

At the MCN conference in Portland in November, I presented some of the research I’ve been doing on new approaches to mobile experience design. Sheila Carey from the Canadian Heritage Information Network kindly put together a panel for the conference on “Making the Call: Evaluating Mobile Projects in Museums” that pulled my work together with that of Sherry Hsi, who analyzed with keen hindsight the Exploratorium’s seminal Electronic Guidebook project, and Koven Smith’s latest call to action: don’t pilot – develop! More on that later…

My slides are here; the podcast of the talk is here. If you have comments or ideas to build on this work, there are pages on the Museum Mobile wiki dedicated to the topic:


7 Responses to “Evaluation-led Mobile Experience Design”

  1. Vincent Ronden
    January 4th, 2010 @ 8:07 am

    I’ve tried translating the movieclip into English. Since i’m not so good in direct translation the English can have some flaws. My apologies for that!

    The text:

    The people are visitors of the Amsterdam State museum who are being guided by a very sophisticated method. By use of a ‘hearing aid’ the visitors get information and are being guided to the different artworks in the exhibition. The spoken words are recorded in several languages on a so called tape recorder

    “French example text”

    The sound of the magnetic tape goes through an amplifier towards a ring line which is located next to the plinths of the different rooms of the exhibition. The electromagnetic radiation which comes from the ring line makes it possible to use a normal hearing aid with built in induction spool to hear the spoken word without it disturbing the stillness of the museum. The earplugs are carefully disinfected after each use. Each visitor gets a hearing aid and then follows an invisible guide throughout the museum exhibition.

    “Dutch example text”

    There already is a lot of interest abroad in this Dutch ‘first’ in the field of guiding.

  2. nancyproctor
    January 4th, 2010 @ 9:20 am

    Thanks so much, Vincent! That’s really helpful and interesting to have the full text. I’m intrigued that much of this marketing spiel is still used in promoting audio tours today.

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  5. nancyproctor
    January 30th, 2010 @ 1:42 am

    I did a bit more poking around the site with the wonderful early audio tour clip, and found that it is from 1952, so much earlier than I thought and said in this podcast! This is also 5 years before the founding of Acoustiguide, the oldest audio tour company I am aware of.

    Here is the short descriptive text that the Dutch Gescheidenis (History) website offers about the clip:

    “Wireless tour of the Amsterdam Stedelijk Museum
    Polygoon Hollands News, July 28, 1952, b / w
    In the Amsterdam Stedelijk Museum visitors receive an electrical hearing aid which is given explication of the paintings in the halls.”


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    April 10th, 2010 @ 7:24 am

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  7. Paul Stork
    May 2nd, 2010 @ 2:07 pm

    please read more about this historic audiotour including a translation at

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