And now a word from our sponsors. . .

Just wanted to take some time out to that a few of the organizations who are helping to make THATCamp Museums NYC possible.

Microsoft Research is dedicated to conducting both basic and applied research in computer science and software engineering. Since 2009 when it supported THATCamp Pacific Northwest, Microsoft Research has been a donor for THATCamps and continues to be an active donor for the THATCamp project. Beginning in 2011, MS Research has provided more than $10,000 in support: $1,000 for THATCamp CHNM 2012, $500 apiece for many other THATCamps, including THATCamp Museums NYC.

NYPL Labs is an experimental unit at the New York Public Library developing ideas and tools for digital research. A collaboration among curators, designers and technologists, NYPL Labs is dedicated to rethinking what a public research library can be and do in the new information commons. The BGC and NYPL have an established relationship that includes the Visualizing 19th Century New York project, and we are very thankful for the support that NYPL Labs was able to provide for THATCamp Museums NYC.

Lastly, we would be greatly remiss if we failed to mention the role of Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media in not only providing guidance and support for THATCamp Museums NYC, but also for giving rise to the THATCamp movement. We would like to especially recognize the tireless and cheerful Amanda French. The energy and commitment that Amanda puts forward ensures that each of these events has the support it requires to go off well, and she is one of the reasons for the strong sense of community that is so important to the THATCamp movement.

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Session Proposal: History on the Hoof (Mobilizing History)

While commercial applications of virtual reality explode on your mobile screen, the history potential of the smart phone valiantly struggles to catch up. The Digital Humanities team of Kathleen Hulser and Steve Bull have been experimenting with history on the hoof. They concoct augmented reality scenarios that turn the smart phone into a history translator that conjures buried archival materials into real world contexts. Two recent forays show the potential for plucking history from the scholarly realm and popping it into surprising settings. “Tecumseh” summons an image of the Shawnee leader who tried to found a Pan-Indian Nation, during the War of 1812. No, Indians aren’t erased from the history, they’ve just been waiting in your mobile to re-materialize. Bull lurked amidst classical busts in the gardens of the Villa dei Pini, Bogliasco ITALY, to install “inVisible Presence” using augmented reality to make the men of marble to mobilize their thoughts. In both cases above the visitor is given the opportunity to have a snap shot taken with the avatar and posted to a social media site.

Categories: Museums, Open Access, Session Proposals, Social Media, Visualization | 1 Comment

Session Proposal: Confronting Controversial Tour Groups

What are some things you can do, when you happen to hear a tour group leader spouting some blatantly inaccurate information at their participants? Whether it’s a creationist group visiting the evolution wing of a museum, or an Official museum tour where the leader was ill-informed about the topic (happens a more often than you might think), most people tend to leave them alone. But, what if you are the type of person that just simply can’t stand idly by?! I will propose a strategy for addressing the situation that is diplomatic (you can NOT be mean!), pragmatic (using utility as a motivation for changing opinion), and concise (you might only have 30 seconds to talk). We can compare its strengths and weaknesses against any other approaches anyone else might have.

Categories: General, Session Proposals | 1 Comment

How-to Propose a Session

Realizing that some of you might not be familiar with WordPress Multi-Site so figured I would make a quick how-to to get you rolling.  Here are the steps:

1. Go to the login page for the WordPress dashboard for THATCamp Museums NYC here (this is a link to open the address on a new page/tab). It should look like this:

2. Enter the username and password to the site that you received when you were made a user of the site. (Email me if you did not receive this info or have any problems with this)

3. Once you enter that information and login you should see the dashboard, which looks like this.

4. On the top left of the dashboard menu select Posts.

5. Now click Add New

6. You should now have a place to create a title for your post and add content. Enjoy!

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The Time is Now to Start Proposing Sessions

The great thing about THATCamps is that sessions and schedules are proposed by and agreed upon by the attendees. That means that what we talk about and what we do on Sunday will be up to all of you, the CAMPERS. In order to get things started, you the people need to post proposals for sessions to this blog. This is where you get to express what you find interesting in the field of museums/archives/cultural heritage and technology and to . The more talk there is about the sessions prior to THATCamp Museums NYC, the faster we can get going on the Saturday morning, so please join in and help us out!

Here are some topics from your applications to get your brains started:

  • Digital Pedagogy in Study of Art History and Material Culture
  • Best Practices in Institutional Digital Strategies
  • Digital Repatriation of Aboriginal Objects
  • Connections Between Digital and Physical Objects
  • Game-based Approaches within Museums
  • Digital Archiving and Preservation of Photographic, Performing and Multi-media Arts
  • Integration of Object Data and Bibliographical Data
  • Copyright & Licensing Issues Surrounding the Digitization of Art & Use of Art Images
  • Linked Open Data-Libraries, Archives, and Museums
  • Mobile Applications as Pedagogy and Museum Experiences
  • Future of Visual and Multimedia Storytelling for Museums
  • Application and Evolution of Metadata Standards

As far as process goes, you should all now have an account and username that will allow you to log in and add a post to this blog. The site uses WordPress and the process for adding a post should be either familiar or relatively easy to figure out. If you are having problems with that process or are ensure of just how the whole THATCamp proposal process works feel free to email us at thatcampmuseumsnyc[at]bgc[dot]bard[dot]edu. Alternatively you can visit the very helpful Propose a Session page on the THATCamp home site. There is a good explanation of the whole process there as well as good examples of posts from other THATCamps.

Lastly, remember that this is an UNconference. Creative, out-of-the-box, and even fun and playful ideas are in play here, and the more diverse the sessions the more enriching the whole experience will prove to be for everyone.

Categories: Administrative, General | 5 Comments

Workshop Information Available

I realized that I emailed all the registered attendants and Tweeted that the workshop information was available but did not post it to the THATCamp Museums NYC blog, so here it goes. Workshop topics, instructors,and scheduling was finalized last week and we now have a fabulous slate of workshops from an esteemed group of instructors. Details about the workshops can be found at here and schedule information can be found here. We would like people to register for each workshop via thatcampmuseumsnyc[at]bgc[dot]bard[dot]edu. Registration will initially be limited to people accepted to the conference, but there is a small chance that we may be able to open up a few slots to the wider public as we draw closer to the conference. So, if you are unable to make it to Saturday and Sunday you may still be able to join us on Friday. Pay attention to this site and to @THATCampMuseums for more info.

Once again thanks to all the instructors for volunteering your time, and we look forward to seeing everyone in two weeks.

Categories: Administrative, General, Workshops | Comments Off on Workshop Information Available

THATCamp Museums NYC fills up in 8 days!!

It took just a little more than a week, but THATCamp Museums NYC filled up sometime early this morning. It has been really great to see such an instantaneous level of interest manifest itself and as I have tweeted the range of interests, skills, and professions in the registered pool is really something to behold. Looks like it will be a wonderful weekend with lots of great conversations.

For those of you who missed registering in time, you can still get on the wait list here. As spots open up due to cancellations we will notify you if your registration has been accepted.

Keep tuned to this site for more info about workshops (almost finalized) and other details as we get closer to the conference and see you in May.

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Registration is Officially Open

We opened registration up this afternoon for THATCamp Museums NYC, so now is your chance to join in the fun before we fill up. To register fill out the form on the Registration page and we will email you with information regarding the status of your registration as soon as possible. We will be accepting the first 90 registrants so time is of the essence. If you register and do not make it within the first 90, we will put you on the wait list and inform you if there is a change.

Look forward to seeing you all and remember to email me at thatcampmuseumsnyc[at]bgc[dot]bard[dot]edu or the reach me via Twitter @THATCampMuseums.

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THATCamp Museums NYC Registration will open April 2nd

We can now officially announce that registration for THATCamp Museums NYC will open on April 2nd. We will be accepting registrants on a first come first serve basis and have room for 90 participants, so sign up as soon as possible once registration opens. When you register you will receive an email that your registration has been accepted and then another email confirming that you registered before the conference filled up if you are one of the first 90 registrants. More specific information about the registration process will be made available the 2nd.

Some other questions you may have about registration and the upcoming THATCamp:

How much does it cost to register for this thing?
Nothing. That’s one of the great things about THATCamps, registration for them is always little or nothing, which is a great way to open up the participant base to as wide a group as possible.

Who can register for THATCamp Museums NYC?
Anyone really. While this THATCamp was envisioned as regional and museum-centric, it is always great to have eager voices from outside of NYC and even from other fields. Just know that because the majority of the community will be local museum/cultural heritage folk that conversations and sessions will skew that way.

How do I keep up with everything about THATCamp Museums NYC?
We encourage all applicants, participants, organizers, and onlookers to sign up for a Twitter account and follow news, announcements, discussions, and general hype coming from our profile (@THATCampMuseums) and the global THATcamp hashtag (#thatcamp). Also, if you don’t already have one, go sign up for a Gravatar account.

Who do I contact with any questions about registration, travel, etc.?
You either send a message to our Twitter profile (@THATCampMuseums) or email us at thatcampmuseumsnyc[at]bgc[dot]bard[dot]edu.

What kind of workshops will be offered?
We will be making another announcement in the next week or so about workshops happening on the Friday before the conference on May 18th. It looks like we will have a really strong lineup, but are looking to continue to expand the offerings, so if you are interested in teaching a workshop drop us a line at the email above about any idea you might have for a workshop you could teach. Also, let us know if there are any tools or methodologies you might be interested in a workshop on and we might be able to drum

That’s all for now. Looking forward to seeing everyone in May!

Categories: Administrative, General | Comments Off on THATCamp Museums NYC Registration will open April 2nd

Why THATCamp Museums NYC?

I was emailing with the fabulous Beth Harris(@bethrharris) of Smarthistory fame about THATCamp Museums NYC the other day and she was interested in knowing who was coming and what motivated this particular unconference. I figured that I would share my response here because it is a good summary of just what this THATCamp will be all about and why it will hopefully have a significant impact on the NYC scene.

“The last time I went to THATCamp Prime down at George Mason I was thinking that the unconference model would suit a lot of the work being done by humanists in the New York area and that it was a shame that no one had hosted one in the city yet. I realized that part of the problem is that New York is such a massive place that doing a regional conference and limiting it to 100 people would be difficult. So, I started thinking about what smaller communities we interact with here at the Bard Graduate Center that would benefit from the collaboration, networking, and resource sharing that unconferences are so good at promoting. What came to mind was that through the BGC’s connections to a lot of different museums I find that many technologists and researchers at museums are often trying to answer the same questions in isolation because of the size or operational nature of their institutions. This seemed like a great waste of time as there was no need for them to each recreate the wheel on different projects when they would be better off working together and sharing solutions. So, I came to the realization that those in the museum community of NYC who are interested in the implementation of technology could use a gathering where they could hear what other people were working on, find collaborators and strengthen the NY cultural heritage and technology network. Hence, THATCamp Museums NYC. Although I don’t know who will be participating as of yet, I’m hoping that we get a wide range of participants with an equally wide range of skills and interests, but focused on the application of technology in museums and other cultural heritage institutions. The unconference structure will mean more conversation and less long presentations, so hopefully a lot of people will be able to actively participate, get involved, and get a lot out of the weekend.”

Writing that up for Beth got me really excited for an event that is now less than two months away. This week I will be announcing a lot more information about the upcoming unconference, including the opening of registration and a list of probable workshop topics and instructors.

Looking forward to seeing everyone in May and remember to let us know if you have any questions via the email thatcampmuseumsnyc[at]bgc[dot]bard[dot]edu or the Twitter handle @THATCampMuseums.

Categories: Administrative, General | Comments Off on Why THATCamp Museums NYC?