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published: March 2004
analytic scripts updated:
November 7, 2010

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0  License

Museum Information Architecture: Using the Web to Make Sense of it (at) All
Jim Blackaby, Mystic Seaport Museum, USA

Workshop: Museum Information Architecture

This workshop will explore the information that museums manage -- not just their collections, but their membership lists, program offerings, calendars of events, their newsletter, the staff list -- everything. Since so much of this kind of information either shows up on the web or is likely to show up on the web, the occasion of its web publication is a good starting point for this discovery process.

The goal is to try to make some simple sense out of the mass of information, to develop a set of basic elements. From that set of basic elements, tools can be described (if not actually built in the course of the workshop) that would begin to solve the information challenges of our complex organizations. The web serves as a key to the process, but as importantly, it serves as the publications tool for re-organized information.

Participants should come armed with a sense of what their institutions entire set of information needs might encompass. Think about all the things on your websites and how you might think of indexing those. Beyond that, a basic understanding of the tools that they have in place for managing that information would be useful.

The premise of this workshop is that the web turns out to be a very useful middle ground where these disparate elements can begin to come together as well as to be organized and disseminated.