• There is a wide range of technology used throughout the museum. Most forms are more interactive, while others provide passive engagement
  • The third floor exhibits have more of a mixture of analog and digital technologies and displays, whereas the second floor exhibits seem mainly digital-focused.
  • Most digital technologies seem to effectively provide an engaging experience for visitors, while others create confusion
  • How much technology is too much technology? Will some visitors feel overwhelmed by the amount of digital technology at the MIT museum?

What is working

  • The digital technologies provide a very individualized experience. For instance, the speakers in the AI display only sound when you walk past them, giving the visitor a unique and immersive experience. The sound technology blurs the distinctions between the display, gallery space, and visitor. The sound becomes part of the atmosphere and space itself, minimizing the sense of distance between the audience and display.
  • There is a wide range of interactive technology that caters to visitors - games, videos, AI poetry generation, etc. These cater to multiple audiences and effectively allow engagement in multiple forms.
  • The display on the second floor allows visitors to submit their own inputs, which are then added to an animated display. This display is dynamic, changing throughout the day depending on user inputs, and participatory, allowing visitors to become a part of the display. Visitors may feel a sense of value and belonging as they see their information become part of a bigger whole. The display itself is also very aesthetically pleasing, further encouraging visitors to interact with it or simply admire it as a more passive activity.
  • On the second floor, the Designing Involvement display allows visitors to pick up a handheld speaker so that they can listen to the corresponding video being played. This solves the issue of visitors not knowing when moving image displays begin and end, while also minimizing excess sound pollution and disturbances to other visitors.
  • The variety of types of displays on the third floor caters to a wider variety of visitors - those who prefer an interactive experience, those who prefer to be more passive, those who prefer digital technologies, and those who have a more analog taste. The second floor seems more geared towards the digital-savvy visitor.

What isn’t working

  • Is there ever a thing as too much digital technology? Specifically on the second floor, almost all of the displays require active engagement and interaction with digital technologies for the most fruitful experience. The passive museum-goer who prefers a less interactive experience may feel left behind.
  • The section where visitors could guess whether or not videos were deep fakes had multiple tv screens above the section, playing seemingly random videos. Though there was no audio on the videos, the multiple screens were still overwhelming and didn’t seem to contribute to the display.
  • Some displays, such as the AI poetry creator, can be confusing and cause frustration. Patience is required from the visitor as they learn how to properly engage with these technologies. Visitors may think: Am I doing this right? Is there something else to this? I don’t think it’s working.