Museum utilizes new technology
Cutting edge ideas are not often associated with museums however the College of Eastern Utah's Prehistoric Museum (CEUPM) wants to change this notion with some of it's newer options for enhancing the museum experience.
As with all museums the CEUPM has had to balance it's exhibits informational content between the extremes of too much, or too little. And while it is ultimately up to the patrons who decide how much information is enough, it can vary widely depending on the person and CEUPM has realized this.
The museum's new project involves a new walking tour around the CEUPM in Price which patrons can call into a phone network on their cell phone and receive as much, or as little exhibit information as they want.
"This is really a breakthrough. The other option was headphones, which are more of a pain for both the museum and the people using them," said Jeff Bartlett, Director of Collection and research at the CEUPM.
The system has seen a great deal of success and since it's beginning last fall it has had to expand into unlimited lines because of the traffic load it has revived. Today the system cost the museum $195 per month, but depending on the month and usage the price and fluctuate.
One thing that the museum prides itself on is that all of the information provided over the system is in house, and all the scripting is done by local employees, who also set up the exhibits and do research. "We're sitting in the middle of a big bull's eye in terms of paleontology, archeology and geology," said Bartlett.
The system along with other internet supported technologies has also enabled the CEUPM to gather more detailed statistics on it's patrons. It is now possible for the museum to see how many people look at a single exhibit, as well as where they are from and how much info most people prefer on a subject. "We've seen people from all over the world," said Director of public relations Christine Trease.
"This is the wave of the future for museums," concluded Bartlett.