Star Trek Museum of Science website

28 06 2007

One of the first Second Life museums I visited was the Star Trek Museum of Science. I didn’t get long to look around it (probably less than 10 minutes), although it has left me with my avatar eating popcorn that I haven’t managed to stop yet.

Star Trek Museum of Science website

Sabri Piccard of the Museum has left a comment [I want to link straight to the comment but I can’t work out how to do that in WordPress], pointing us to the excellent Star Trek Museum of Science website that provides tons of information on the project.

From Sabri’s comment:

The aims of the Star Trek Museum of Science are to promote greater awareness of the Star Trek universe among the general public, promote the study of the scientific and engineering technologies found in Star Trek and encourage interest in the real-life physics, astronomy, information technology and other sciences that are the foundation of those technologies. So, other than having fun, we hope folks learn something too at the museum!


Richard Urban on

26 06 2007

During Friday’s UK Museums and the Web conference, Mike Ellis mentioned his preference for over Second Life. I’ve never tried and I’ll try and find time to have a look at it, but, to be honest it’s hard enough finding time to look at Second Life. homepage

Helpfully, Richard Urban, co-author with Mike Twidale on the Museums and the Web Second Life paper, has just posted on Musematic about his first look at

WordPress profile picture

26 06 2007

JonSun Spitteler avatar imageI’ve created a JonSun Spitteler profile picture that will be used by WordPress when (or if ever) I leave a comment on another WordPress blog while using this profile. I used the banner image from above and used the WordPress cropping tool to crop the image.

This is also the first image I’ve used that is being hosted by WordPress. Previous images have been hosted on a third party server or used straight from Flickr using their excellent blogging tools. WordPress will host up to 50MB of files (images/videos) on their free service and you can pay for more.

Mike Twidale at the UK Museums and Web conference

25 06 2007

Last Friday I saw Mike Twidale speak at Web Adept in Leicester – the UK’s Museums and Web mini-conference. Fresh and New, Electronic Museums, Open Objects and Brian Kelly all have coverage of the rest of the conference.

UK Museums and Web conference

UK Museums and Web conference, originally uploaded by new folder.

Mike spoke about the same experiences covered in his paper on Second Life and Museums delivered for this year’s international Museums and the Web Conference. It was a shame that time constraints only allowed for the briefest coverage (most of the day’s talks were stuck in the no man’s land between being an introduction for the total beginner and unrevealing for those with an interest in the topic).

Mike gave a quick rundown of some of the most interesting Second Life ‘museum experiences’ he and his fellow researchers had come across. Hopefully I’ll find the time to have a look at them, the list was (not including any already covered on this blog):

  • SploLand (related to San Francisco Exploratorium)
  • Bolinas Art Museum
  • Artsplace (using public domain items from the Smithsonian)
  • Second Life Historical Museum
  • Paris 1900
  • Jewish Historical Centre
  • Xibalda (a Mayan Museum)
  • Virtual Morocco (possibly created by the Moroccan tourist board)
  • Museum of Antiquity
  • New Globe

A Second Life for Your Museum: 3D Multi-User Virtual Environments and Museums

20 06 2007

Richard Urban and Michael Twidale produced this academic paper for the 2007 Museums and the Web Conference – A Second Life for Your Museum: 3D Multi-User Virtual Environments and Museums.


The paper gives an overview of some of the museum-like activities currently being undertaken in Second Life. Current development is mainly in the hands of pioneers, often interested amateurs engaging in serious leisure to create spaces enabling them to share their interests with others. These efforts are explored in this paper through a systematic analysis of museum visits and a qualitative analysis of interviews with designers and developers of museums in Second Life. Findings identified include the impact of the current technology on what is created, and the importance of interaction-centric designs.

Dresden Gallery

14 06 2007

I only just had time to have a look at the Dresden Gallery, I wish I’d come here earlier on. This looked like a good comparison for a typical British Victorian art gallery. Not certain that it is based on a real gallery but I presume it is.

There are lots of rooms inside a very grand building with courtyard. The art is very detailed and you can right-click on paintings for more information. I sat down in one room to look at the art.Sitting down in Dresden Gallery

It’s easy to imagine the any UK gallery laid out like this.

Another room of the Dresden Gallery

Just found their website, with this information:

Visit one of the world’s most famous museums, the Old Masters Picture Gallery of the Dresden State Art Collections. There you can view great masterpieces of key importance for the history of art, such as Raphael’s “Sistine Madonna” or Giorgione’s “Sleeping Venus”.

All the rooms of the museum have been reconstructed true to scale on the “Dresden Gallery” island in Second Life ® and all 750 masterpieces in the permanent exhibition are on display.

Vincent van Gogh and Starry Night

14 06 2007

Top of the search results for museum was Vincent Van Gogh’s Starry Night Island. There was no-one there and for some reason I had a green smoke coming out of my avatar.Starry Night.

I got talking to one of the owners:

[6:29] You: hello
[6:29] Milan Brynner: hi
[6:29] You: You own this place?
[6:29] Milan Brynner: with others, yes
[6:29] You: I work for a UK museum and I am spending some time looking round Second Life for research
[6:30] Milan Brynner: to see if there’s opportunities?
[6:30] Milan Brynner: or just to get a general picture
[6:30] You: At this stage it’s certainly only to get a general picture
[6:31] Milan Brynner smiles
[6:31] You: We sometimes get asked if we have thought about ‘doing anything’ with Second Life
[6:31] Milan Brynner: I think there’s a great new challenge to museums in 3D environments
[6:31] Milan Brynner: lots of possibilities to present art in a new way
[6:31] Milan Brynner: add experience
[6:31] You: what do you mean by new way?
[6:31] Milan Brynner: well, for instance how we do it here
[6:32] Milan Brynner: put the colorfull works of Van Gogh in a night view
[6:32] Milan Brynner: instead of on a white wall
[6:32] Milan Brynner: not to mention the 3D paintings
[6:32] You: I haven’t seen the 3d paintings yet
[6:32] You: I need to have a look round
[6:33] Milan Brynner: so, all in all I think it’s very exciting to work with art here
[6:33] Milan Brynner: a new approach
[6:33] Milan Brynner: even getting the intrest of a new audience
[6:33] Milan Brynner: ppl who don’t like museums RL
[6:33] Milan Brynner: but certainly enjoy the art as it is presented here
[6:34] You: One of my biggest concerns is that the audience will be quite narrow in Second Life
[6:34] Milan Brynner: SL is only the beginning
[6:34] Milan Brynner: we’re about to make the transition from 2D to 3D onoine environments
[6:34] You: Yes, I suppose so
[6:34] Milan Brynner: *online
[6:35] Milan Brynner: Gardner Research predicted that by 2011, 80% of the internpopulation will in fact be active in a3D world
[6:35] You: Sorry, I feel rude just wandering off and looking round while I talk to you!

I think it might have been rude to walk away while talking as Milan Brynner stopped talking to me at this point. It could have been because I was still eating popcorn from the Star Trek museum.

There was also a shop where you could buy sunflowers and Van Gogh t-shirts (for your avatar).
Starry Night shop

Upstairs in the Flowers Expo –
Flowers expo in Vincent's Starry Night