Thursday, October 04, 2007

a new museum starts virtual

I am thrilled to see that the Smithsonian's newest museum -- the National Museum of African American History and Culture -- is open for business. Their opening exhibition is “Let Your Motto Be Resistance,” featuring portraits and photographs of people who stood against oppression, from Frederick Douglass to Ella Fitzgerald to Malcolm X. They have lesson plans. They have a Memory Book for visitor-supplied content that makes great use of the visualization interface for browsing that's also employed on the rest of the site.

It's a really nice experience, especially for a museum for which groundbreaking is not scheduled until 2012.

From the site:

With the help of a $1 million grant of technology and expertise from IBM, the NMAAHC Museum on the Web represents a unique partnership to use innovative IBM expertise and services to bring the stories of African American History to a global audience. Conceived from the very beginning as a fully virtual precursor to the museum to be built on the Washington Mall, this is the first time a major museum is opening its doors on the Web prior to its physical existence.
This is a very exciting collaboration, and a great way to build a community around an institution and its mission years before anyone will walk through the door.

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