Museums and the Web Florence 2014

Palazzo Vecchio in Florence has been the ideal setting to host for the first time in Italy the international conference Museums and the Web, organized yearly in the USA and dedicated to the relationship between technology and cultural places.

For me it was the chance to reconnect with “old” colleagues and meet new ones.

These are the three key points on which I’d like to focus, among the numerous matters discussed by the speakers during the three days-conference:

  • metrics: Robert Stein, Director of the Dallas Museum of Art (500.000 visitors per year), shared some very interesting metrics he used to measure and evaluate the initiatives of his institution. That’s a good practice we Italians aren’t quite used to: measuring the results of a project and planning the next steps according to that data.
  • live-tweeting: it was surprisingly useful during the presentations, since it helped me focus on the key-points, especially if the speaker didn’t have an effective presentation style. You have to be trained to be able to listen, synthetize and tweet properly, so thanks to BAM! Strategie Culturali, #svegliamuseo, flod republic and other bloggers.
  • gamification: it’s a hot topic, trendy I’d say, but it has to be treated carefully in my opinion. As a provocation, I’d like to recommend speakers to not talk about gamification in conferences about digital storytelling if they haven’t a line like “I play videogames from the beginning to the end” on their CV! 😛
    Taking “just a peek” at an storytelling-based game it’s like listening to the beginning of a story and never knowing how it will end, if you know what I mean.

I also showed the work we did for the project Rationalism in the Province of Como in the demonstration area inside Palazzo Vecchio.
Someone told me that he liked it because the app looked more “emotional” compared to other solutions, since it generated empathy and involvement.
And if an french expert in the field tells you that, in english, I think it’s a quite valuable appreciation! 😉

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