The museum of the future is an organisation influenced by social and technological change. Recently, on this blog, I’ve been focusing on social over technological change. This post is different.
Technology is changing the world, and it is doing so rapidly. Advances in technology are also directly affecting museums and other cultural institutions, and the role they play (or do not play).
- Blockchains and similar technologies are redefining trust. Cryptocurrencies may be a fad, but for institutions proud of and relying on being trusted sources of information, the underlying technology is not.
- Artificial Intelligence will replace curators, more or less. Plus deep learning algorithms may use online museum collections to perfect their skills.
- Robots, so far, have only been spotted in staff roles at museums. Give it a few years, and robots will be a museum audience.
- Games. Somewhere between PlayStation 2 – the last console I owned – and PS4 something massive happened, and not just in graphics. Where game reviews used to focus on the hard side of things (glitches, gibs, guns), the ones I watch now on YouTube judge a game by the empathy players develop for the characters and the depth of the story. Wow.
- And good old social media, which is unrecognisable compared to ten years ago when it started to dominate museum debates. (How long has it been since you left a comment on a blog? Scroll down and win a prize!)
None of these and other trends are likely to reverse and time soon. Many of these trends are overwhelming for those of us who are not in the driver’s seat of technological innovation. Most museums are not in said driver’s seat. They’re not even riding on the same bus. Continue ReadingRead More »