AthenaPlus: the MOVIO toolkit for designing and publishing digital exhibitions for cultural and touristic storytelling

Sam Habibi Minelli, Italy , maria teresa natale, Italy

Educators and cultural guides [3,4,5] are asked to answer to new needs of students and visitors, helping them to navigate safely and generate satisfaction from the fruition of CH everywhere and from any device without getting lost in the abundance of non qualitative cultural knowledge made available on-line. The new generation of smart-phones and tablets offer new paradigms of CH fruition. These devices provide a wide range of applications and functionalities, enabling ‘communication’, knowledge creation and sharing, improving the quality of experience. New social skills are emerging, users create new forms narrative content, they share knowledge, they follow emerging experts, they express what they like/dislike. Cultural institutions express the need of new communication, collaboration paradigms and instruments. A collection of digital items does not constitute an exhibition but a collection: only when these items are carefully selected to illustrate a topic, and are tied together forming a narrative or a logical itinerary, they constitute an exhibition. Online virtual/digital exhibitions, independently of the degree of sophistication of the technology used, can be put together in such a way that they can provide alternative or extending experiences to the real event, which can involve the user in a process of discovery, knowledge acquisition, and learning of the cultural goods preserved in museums or outside in the territory, or finally completely virtual. Deriving from ground studies and coordinated by the Italian Ministry for Cultural Heritage and Tourism (MIBACT) [3] guidelines about virtual exhibitions and best practices of e-Infrastructures have been identified, selecting the tools needed by three communities of users: professional curators, teachers and tourist guides to create narrations and digital exhibitions putting together digital culture into cultural stories.

AthenaPlus [1] is a European funded project coordinated by the Istituto Centrale per il Catalogo Unico delle biblioteche italiane (ICCU) and it is composed by 40 partners including museums and archives from 21 Member States countries. The main objectives of the AthenaPlus project are to collect more than 3.6 millions metadata records to Europeana from museums, cultural institutions, libraries and archives; improve search, retrieval and re-use of Europeana’s content; and experiment with enriched metadata their re-use adapted for users with different needs (tourists, schools, scholars). To reach these goals Meta has implemented the MOVIO [2] platform, which will provide tools to support the development of virtual exhibitions, touristic and didactic applications. The MOVIO open source [2,6] CMS platform, developed by GuppoMeta,  is an easy and ready to use toolkit to build online and mobile virtual/digital exhibitions and narrations. It is already in use by 20 Italian institutions and 10 European partners from AthenaPlus consortium.

We propose a demonstration session where we will present the goals of our project and how to use MOVIO tools to create a digital exhibition, the storyteller toolkit: from the creation of a media archive to a non-scaring ontology builder and the creation of visit paths, up to mapping, time-line, galleries and social tools. Before and during the how-to session, we will showcase some successful exhibitions created using MOVIO’s open source platform.

GruppoMeta: For the past ten years, the information and multimedia technologies aimed at the management and enhancement of Cultural Heritage, have been the main business of Gruppo Meta. The Gruppo Meta has developed a strong specialization in this business, developing a significant number of cutting-edge projects in both Italy and abroad.

The solutions are developed in close relationship with the customer and combine speedy innovation, marketing strategies and opportunities offered by mobile communication. This was achieved thanks to relations with national and international universities and research institutes.

The approach is highly specialized and testing of new technologies(semantic search, mobile apps, virtual reality, 3D, augmented reality) enable high performance services and products to be offered, both in the management of cultural heritage and in the applications developed in the field of Interactive Exhibition. The professionalism and the experience of graphics and web designer ensures a more creative and unique approach to the projects.


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