AR.chive digitally represents a collection of artifacts stored within the M Shed archive. This will provide visitor interactivity using a combination of augmented reality and image recognition software.
The purpose of AR.chive is to alleviate the problem that the staff of the M Shed brought up in informal interviews, this problem concerns the lack of space in the museum and the amount of artifacts in the archive. Currently the only way in which the visitors can view the artifacts in the archive is with closely guided tours. This presents a logistical problems for the the limited amount of staff.
Visitors can hold an Android tablet over silhouettes of the artifacts to view 3D digital representations. The silhouettes will be displayed on an illuminated glass dome which will be on top of a podium. Alongside the 3D image, there will also be an information overlay which will provide visitors with an overview of the artifact.
The information could be implemented with either text or audio. This would closely match many of the other displays in the MShed. We could include stories and accounts about the artifacts to give a more emotional experience. Furthermore, having two types of information would increase the accessibility for those who have reading or hearing difficulties.
To benefit the visitor experience of the M Shed, AR.chive will allow users to vote on which artifact they would prefer to see exhibits on within the museum. The staff can then move the most popular artifacts from the archive and create displays, with more of a customised experience to the users, giving them the content visitors would most like to see about Bristol’s history.