Rachel Sawdy & Razan Baabdullah

Rethinking the MIT Museum Our areas of interest:

Length of information in chat labels — what’s too little? Too much? How to engage with this?

Opportunities for reflection

Our findings:

  • Amount of text in wall and gallery labels varies across the exhibit—gallery wall was not immediately obvious on how to navigate, not a lot of monitors to engage with. Could be crowded
  • Sometimes text boxes were very close to one another, and from afar it looked like a lot of information to digest
  • Hard to look at some of the text because of how low to the ground it was
  • Photography section offered a quiet space for reflection, same with the immersive AI simulation room
  • Stairs with cushions as well as the stairs in the museum entrance are great spots for sitting solo to reflect or to sit and chat with a friend
  • People were happy at the AI section and excited to try new things and interact with them. They allowed more interaction and engagement than the other stations
  • People looked joyful in the AI section and excited to try new things and interact with them. They allowed more interaction and engagement than the other stations.
  • Some of the AI stations had sensors, so when you stepped into the circle, it started part of the lecture (intro, background, etc.). But you can get conflicting sounds from the station next to you, and it starts to get confusing.
  • Some of the screens are flat, making it difficult to watch with the light reflecting off of them.
  • The old MIT certificate was cool to look at and enticing.
  • The Minecraft station was interesting but not interactive; perhaps add a PlayStation or some trials for the visitor to participate in and engage with.
  • The objects on the wall were confusing and overwhelming.
  • There were some seating areas.
  • The yellow room was random; we didn’t feel like we could interact with it or discern its value.
  • The space on the third floor was a little crowded; there were too many objects in one place.

Our top two ideas:

  • Space for reflection was a strength of the museum (quiet spaces, stairs with cushions) and can be capitalized on by offering prompts for visitors to consider. Visitors can use these to reflect, they can discuss with whoever they visited with, or they can simply ignore and reflect however they’d like.
  • Because it’s the MIT museum, we give visitors some sort of MIT chip (similar to silicon chip) that they can use to interact with throughout the museum - visitors could scan their chip at different stations throughout the museum for interactive prompts and activities. This could save room on the existing chat labels and gallery text because some information and engagement would be shifted to the MIT chip, this way, those visitors that want more and to have more interactivity have a way to access that.