Digital content in cultural heritage institutions has become more or less a standard nowadays and is used in various areas like web-pages, media stations at exhibitions, archives, libraries or similar institutions.
Three-dimensional presentations of exhibitions, however, are rare and usually not systematically structured due to a distinct lack of didactic and usability strategies. There used to be no author/curator-friendly editor for developing such exhibitions.
To solve those problems, a prototype called "media.editor" was created by the Institute DIGITAL in cooperation with "Technisches Museum Wien".
Through a graphical user interface even users with basic computer skills are able to develop complex exhibition spaces easily. The most common formats of arbitrary digital objects like texts, pictures, sounds or movies can be placed on maps that correspond to virtual rooms. Visitor interactions and guided tours can thus be modelled easily. This tool is now being used at the museum to create a 3D exhibition space of 100 virtual rooms which will then serve as a digital extension of the permanent exhibition "medien.welten".
This prototype was extended to become a software product which goes by the name of "eXhibition:editor3D".
The software is capable of a wide range of uses. For museums it also allows the realistic planning of exhibitions by providing previews of the various show rooms. Digital representations of real objects can be positioned within the available room and the exhibition designer can compare different layouts. The impression of wandering through the exhibition and thus approaching objects is realistic and helps with finding the perfect positions for the various display items.
In addition, the application offers new exciting ways of presenting topics. Imagine MS Powerpoint (or Keynote from Apple) but in three dimensional space. In future releases the editor will support 3D modelled objects as well - a presentation for a car can include all the facts in textual form, movies, sounds and also an interactive lifelike model.
Furthermore, a private use is possible: to share photographs and movie clips online in a new and gripping way. Flying across holiday pictures and deciding on a soundtrack to enhance this experience could be fun for the whole family. No more boring slide shows.
Software demoversion: www.exhibition3d.at