Stories in the Rock: A Design Case of an Explorable Image Viewer in a Natural History Museum

Main Article Content

Marti Louw
Ahmed Ansari
Chris Bartley
Camellia Sanford

Abstract

This design case explores the affordances of gigapixel image technology for science communication and learning in museum settings through the iterative development of an explorable image viewer to engage visitors in an archaeological exhibit. We reflect on the series of user studies, prototype iterations, and design decisions taken to optimize navigation, annotation and exploration in this zoomable user interface. We highlight a set of design precedents, interaction frameworks, and content structuring approaches, while detailing the development of a media rich digital annotation strategy to augment interpretation, commentary, and conversation about a petroglyph site. Through this work, we highlight the unique affordances of multiscalar image platforms to scaffold disciplinary observation and engagement with scientific content.

Article Details

How to Cite
Louw, M., Ansari, A., Bartley, C., & Sanford, C. (2013). Stories in the Rock: A Design Case of an Explorable Image Viewer in a Natural History Museum. International Journal of Designs for Learning, 4(2). https://doi.org/10.14434/ijdl.v4i2.3688
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Articles
Author Biographies

Marti Louw, University of Pittsburgh Center for Learning in Out-of-School Environments Learning Research Development Center

Marti Louw is Research Faculty at the University of Pittsburgh Center for Learning in Out-of-School Environments (UPCLOSE) and a Research Associate at the Carnegie Museum of Natural History. Her design research practice focuses on how emerging digital media and sensing technologies can be used to create learning experiences that support participation, engagement and shared meaning-making with science. 

Ahmed Ansari, Carnegie Mellon University School of Design

Ahmed Ansari completed his Interaction Design degree at Carnegie Mellon University in 2013 and now teaches design at SZABIST, Karachi, Pakistan. His academic interests involve exploring the philosophical foundations of design, and the applications of living systems theory to design research and practice, as well as to evangelize the use of design thinking and research methods in general pedagogy.

Chris Bartley, CREATE Lab Carnegie Mellon University

Principal Research Programmer

Robotics Institute

Carnegie Mellon University

Camellia Sanford, Rockman et al.

Camellia Sanford is a Senior Researcher at Rockman et al, a research and evaluation company that often provides external feedback to inform the design of projects in formal and informal environments. Her work primarily focuses on investigating learning and engagement in museums and through digital media.