The Joy of Tactile-Based Exhibits

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The Joy of Tactile-Based Exhibits

I’ve always been a tactile person. I would often get in trouble as a kid for touching things I shouldn’t be touching, but I couldn’t help myself (and still can’t), I just love experiencing the world through touch – feeling the world around me. Even when looking for a creative recharge I find myself head down in a puzzle, busy colouring in one of my colouring books or trying out a new recipe. So working for a digital interactive company that focuses on museum and science center exhibits seems like the perfect fit. Not only do I get to learn cool facts about a variety of topics, but I get to be a part of a team that creates exhibits that you can explore with touch (imagine my delight)!

Here are a few examples of exhibits NGX has created that I love getting my hands on:

Gold Rush Exhibition – Would you get Gold Fever?

In this choose your own adventure style interactive quiz you experience the journey of travelling to BC’s gold rush while answering engaging questions and learning interesting facts about the gold rush. You don’t simply choose an answer, but rather complete an action such as selecting an object and dragging it into a trunk or shaking a gold pan to reveal an answer. This interactivity allows for greater engagement.  The choices you make along the journey determine what gold rush personality you would have been, and you are provided with an example of an actual individual from BC’s gold rush.

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Washington State History Museum – Exploring the Clovis Find

This simple, but visually interesting interactive allows you to explore artifacts that are part of the Clovis cache by dragging a magnifying glass across the screen to discover hotspots on the objects. Once a hotspot has been discovered you drop the magnifying glass on it and a field book appears. You explore the field book by turning the pages and learning about that particular object, and about the questions that still remain unanswered. Handwritten font, sketches, taped-in images, and notes all give this exhibit an authentic feel.

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Magna Carta Canada 2015 Traveling Exhibition – Interactive Globe

This interactive globe allows you to move one of three touchscreens along a curved rail that encircles a large physical globe, to find and explore content. Once you discover a section of the globe with content the screen and the section of the physical globe will light up.  The world map on screen is a flattened version of the globe, and has hotspots for various countries that when touched upon, reveal content and imagery. The content explores the impact the Magna Carta document has had on the selected country. I love the connection between the touchscreen and physical globe as it reinforces the influence the Magna Carta has had and how it has helped to shape the world we live in.

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Digital interactive exhibits aren’t just great for physical learners. For example, the Exploring the Clovis Find exhibit may be appealing to visual learners as it contains a number of images and sketches, and underlined and highlighted text. Furthermore, exhibits such as the Interactive Globe are great for social learners who learn better in a group, as visitors can compare and discuss their findings on the section of the world they are exploring.  Whatever your learning style, digital interactive exhibits have something for everyone. I just happen to love the idea that I can touch them without getting into trouble!

-Diedre Feist, Producer & Project Manager

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