Information age? The challenges of displaying information and communication technologies

March 23rd, 2015 | RESEARCH

This paper examines the approach of a major new gallery on information and communication technologies in the Science Museum, situating it in the context of current ideas around the history of technology and exploring the way the curatorial team addressed the challenges of display and interpretation. As a short discussion piece it looks at four broad questions: How has the concept of information, and more importantly an ‘Information Age’ been conceived across differing disciplines? What opportunities can user focused histories present to a gallery on information and communication technologies? What are the challenges for presenting such an abstract concept in a gallery environment? And how can a museum do justice to the display of a technology that is in one sense physical, made up of cables, transmitters and receivers, but at the same time ephemeral and transient, as the information passes through the network? In this way the paper shows how current museum practice both responds to academic themes in the history of technology, whilst negotiating an interpretation approach that engages the public in the history of information and communication networks.

Document

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Team Members

Tilly Blyth, Author, Science Museum, London

Citation

Identifier Type: doi
Identifier: 10.15180/150303

Publication: Science Museum Group Journal
Volume: 1
Number: 3

Related URLs

Full Text via Science Museum Group Journal

Tags

Audience: General Public | Museum | ISE Professionals
Discipline: Education and learning science | History | policy | law | Technology
Resource Type: Peer-reviewed article | Research Products
Environment Type: Exhibitions | Museum and Science Center Exhibits