It is Important in a museum to get the information over to the audience both to educate and develop interes. With today’s internet generation, the best way to deliver information to them is in a technology rich way, with the aid of a multimedia kiosk. A multimedia kiosk means that it can play multiple applications, so it can be an interactive kiosk, which can also play audio and videos - all the ingredients you need to achieve an exciting information kiosk to teach people about the exhibits in the museum.
In recent years, free to enter tourist attractions, which is very often our cities museums have seen an increase in the number of visitors through their doors. National Gallery for example saw it’s visitors increase by 9% to 4.78m visitors and the National Maritime Museum at Greenwich saw an increase of 15% and welcomed 2.37m visitors during 2009.
Museum kiosks have helped to provide a more enjoyable museum learning experience and so have helped museums to provide the ‘Value for Money’ that visitors are expecting.
Museum Kiosks enhance the visitor’s experience by delivering detailed information about a particular exhibit or exhibition. The kiosks might show textual information about the subject, as well as videos and images to increase the users understanding.
Videos are particularly helpful to illustrate processes how things were done, for example how to use the Gutenberg printing press – the video can show a step by step of how the process of printing was accomplished on this machine. The benefits of using the kiosk in this way are that the Gutenberg Press doesn’t have to be exhibited at the museum for visitors to learn about the machine and how it would have been operated.
Functionality would also be available to the user to email the information to them selves to study more in their own time, or they can print off the information displayed on the screen.
Kiosks aimed at children in museums are particularly useful when you have a large exhibit topic to cover – the evolution of man for example. The kiosk can have buttons on the screen, which link to information, images and videos of man at each evolutionary stage. The kiosks can also make learning fun with quizzes and questions asking the kiosks user for information that they should have picked up whilst viewing that particular section.
Besides quizzes and videos, the kiosk can deliver stories to the user. The kiosk shows an image and some text. A ‘next’ button on the screen turns the kiosks to the next screen of the story.
The kiosks could also print out work sheets or a Quiz sheet, for children to discover the answers complete as they travel around that section of the museum. This makes children more receptive to exhibitions during their visit.
Museum kiosks are also disability friendly. A wall-mounted kiosk can be mounted at seated height on the wall, or the kiosk stand or surround can be made to seated height so that people in wheelchairs can access the machine. Additionally the multimedia kiosks have audio, which means that the kiosk can ‘read’ information out to the user, which is great for the visually impaired, or for users with dyslexia or other learning difficulties.
Interactive Touchscreen Kiosks and Kiosk Software News and Information