Re-imagining historical objects with digital interpretation

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c. Australian War Memorial

Spending some time at the Australian War Memorial in Canberra checking out their re-vamped World War 1 galleries. One thing that immediately struck me was the way they had reinterpreted the wonderful (and iconic) historical dioramas in a digital form, using simple interpretation on tablets, for a contemporary audience. The navigation was intuitive, the text clear and interesting, the devices worked like they should – and of course the content was well-researched and written. The tablets were also set up so that you could enlarge the text as well as changing to another language (Chinese? Japanese? I’m not sure which but it was a great idea). There was also a floating arrow that appeared spontaneously encouraging you to touch the tablet in order to access the content. Much better than text panels and it was obvious they were factored into the re-design of the displays from the beginning.

More on the fascinating diorama restoration project can be found on the Memorial’s blog.

Simple ideas well-executed, and worth checking out next time you’re in Canberra.

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