Smart Museum

#smart_museum #cultural_heritage #embedded_technology


The main goal of the project is to create an extensive cultural heritage infrastructure. This infrastructure will enable innovative and more widespread uses of physically available and digital cultural heritage (currently available in MUIS, EFIS, and Europeana).

The Smart Museum will be created in a way that will mediate extensive interactions with cultural heritage among exhibition curators, intellectuals, visitors, and will enable individual contributions and modifications to the digital representation of the exhibits.

The Smart Museum will promote a participatory culture by mediating interactions between curators, educators and visitors and content, enabling individual contributions and modifications of digital representation of heritage artefacts.

The Smart Museum will be enabled by a collection of intelligent context-aware devices that can help merge the digital and the physical worlds. Aside from providing access to static cultural spaces, the Smart Museum can also keep a log of the personal visitor history, contribute to the digital identity of the user, or support ongoing educational programmes.

The Smart Museum will also have the ability to sense and influence the environment through sensors and actuators. An example scenario is when the museum is full, then the way that the exhibition content is presented could be modified to influence the flow of people.

The Smart Museum can be eventually expanded to accommodate encounters with artefacts outside of the museum itself. This can be facilitated through collecting pictures and videos through users’ mobile devices and then feeding that information to the museum’s central content management system that can adapt the museum’s digital content accordingly.

The project can include several stages, each of them realised through a separate ELU project. The aim of these small projects is to go from requirements elicitation to exploring design possibilities, to prototyping, to testing the prototypes and identifying possibilities for improvement.

What is a Smart Museum?

From a technological perspective it includes:

  • An extensive infrastructure of sensors, tags, and audio-visual equipment;
  • Fast networking;
  • Data processing structures for analysing events, context, and sensors, that are based on the surrounding environment and involving user profiles, ontologies, and semantic search engines.

Project stages

Stage 1
Exploring design possibilities
  • Ethnographic studies (technology, architecture)
  • Describing scenarios, producing sketches, storyboards, and mockups
Stage 2
  • Creating a range of technical and architectural prototypes
Stage 3
  • Proposing a testing methodology
  • Testing previously created prototypes


Specific outcomes of the projects would include:
1. Specifications
2. Scenarios
3. Sketches and storyboards
4. Tangible and functional prototypes
5. Descriptions of testing procedures