ASSIGNMENT 2NAME: BONELWASURNAME: NOGQAZASTUDENT NUMBER:201709694LECTURER: DR CHIKUMBIRIKETOPIC: MUSEOLOGY: CONSERVATION AND CURATION TECHNIQUES COURSEDISCUSS HOW DIGITAL TECHNOLOGY HAS TRANSFORMED MUSEUMSWhat is digital technology?Digital technologies are a large range of systems and devices characterised by, but they are not limited to the computer. These include applications of databases and search engines which makes tasks easier to be complicated online.
The examples of digital sources include audio-recording, photographs, films, animation, surveillance cameras and the use of computers. The digital technologies can be in many forms such as when visitors use their smartphones or tablets to enhance their learning and experience and to take record of the collections such that they are available online through certain websites where they can easily visit the online channels to access the information.The history of digital technology in museumsIn the past the museums were previously known to contain physical collections with the focus to preserve, conserve and provide access to the audiences in order to be able to access their collections and objects(Squarzola 2017:85).
The history of computing in museums is the time where in computing technologies were introduced to the work of museum specialists and also the work that curators did around the mid to late 1960s.The history of museum computing was a time where museum specialists started to think beyond the everyday physical use and access to museums and apply the emerging newly technologies to give out services to the museum (Jones 2012 cited in Vance 1986)However, the transition in museums over the past years with the rise of internet in the late 90s have improved the scope of museums and this was a time where smartphones could be easily used to control televisions and technology have driven over museums (Squarzola 2017).In 1963 at the Smithsonian’s national museum of natural history and at the institute for computer research in the humanities and there were some developments which led to the introduction of data processing systems in museums and this was a great time where data became organised electronically (Jones 2012 cited in Vance 1986)Technology is something that is characterised by progress and development and this has played a major role in museums. A lot of visitors and audiences uses the digital online system and majority of the world-wide museums have also developed digital tours. The changes occurred in the capability of databases to accommodate the storage of digital images with the text record describing a text that is moved from museum collections to a more digital form such as videos and audio recording. As this change occurred in museums there was also a need to educate museum specialists and curators on how to operate the digital technologies in museums and understand them for example at the Getty information institute, the museum computer network and archives and museum informatics (Jones 2012). Technology has made life easier for both museums and its visitors through:Multi media: the museums have moved to creating multimedia products that are based on visual and textual content, this includes the use of digital images. The early efforts were carried out by the National museum of American Arts where visitors could navigate through kiosk screens through the museum maps.
The positive impacts of digital technologies in museumsDigital technologies make it easier to navigate the collections without having to physically go to the museum but rather they can be accessible anytime wherever you want them by just going online and search for what you are looking for. The cost efficiency has also dropped in terms of having to travel long distances and it is now easier to manage and conserve the information. Surveillance at the museums has also increased where cameras are used for security reasons to protect from theft or burglaries. Technologies have created innovations of communicating with the audiences such as through screening (Squarzola 2017).
With the use of digital technologies information is easily obtained through high quality forms of browsing and they have enabled museums to develop businesses and have also increased the audiences and sell their products in different ways. Objects can be easily shared online to a larger number of audiences. Digitisation brings about new levels and standards. Economy can be driven and a lots of money comes through and new levels of interaction can be offered (Squarzola 2017).Negative impacts of digital technologies in museumsTechnology has led to an increasing democratisation of museum processes this is when the objects are place online and the resources can benefit from this easier way of sharing information due to low costs involved and this makes it very difficult to protect them.The transformations in museumsThe transformations were that of moving museum information from paper to electronic formats, in recent years they had collected information in a formulated matter.
The shift from mainframe computers to minicomputers to desktop computers and then to client server models. Museums were able to take advantage of market trends towards lower cost computing. This was based on scanning technologies that reduced the amount of heat and light that is generated per scan making. The virtual museums which is a digital creation organised on a permanent and temporary basis in the service of society and its development, open to the public which acquires, conserves, researches, communicate and exhibits in a digital way (Icom).British museumThis museum takes the fourth position in the world popular museums which receives over 6 million. British museum uses programmes that use digital technologies to make sure that the audiences continue to be engaged in exhibitions, these programmes attracts and emancipate visitors experience. They use their smartphones and other online sources (Squarzola 2017).
National museum of natural historyIt has many virtual tours that are combined directly on the website in Washington, here the use of technology is to the extent that it provides images on screens and uses arrows to direct. This enhances the learning experience of visitors.Museums are changing to institutions involved in lifelong learning using information technology to reach out to the public and this will be able to open up their digitised collections and provide with educational programmes that will bring about cultural information for future generations.REFERENCING LISTJones, K.B.2012.The transformation of the digital museum.
In: Marty, P.F(ed) Museum informatics: People, information and technology in museums. New York: Harvard Divinity School.Squarzola, G.
2017.The digital transformation in the world of museum: an improvement or a loss for the customer and the heritage. Venice: Ca’Forscari university of Venice.