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Hidden Histories: a Towards Pervasive Media feasibility study


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This is the presentation of a Towards Pervasive Media feasibility study, carried out between colleagues at the University of Nottingham and a community history group, People's Histreh.

Towards Pervasive Media was funded by EPSRC as a new initiative to foster collaborations between the Arts, Humanities, Science and Engineering at Nottingham. The broad topic of Pervasive Media, refers to new media forms in which the public contributes as well as consumes content, is available anytime and anywhere, and is ever more deeply interwoven into our daily lives.

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Hidden Histories: a Towards Pervasive Media feasibility study

  1. 1. Hidden Histories:To the Castle!<br />A riotous happening, orchestrated by Claire Taylor, Elizabeth FitzGerald & Mike Cravenwith People’s Histreh<br />
  2. 2. Developed existing interest between local community history group and academics in School of History<br />TPM enabled multidisciplinary approach and for other colleagues to be brought into the mix<br />Investigated how located audio can be used to provide opportunities for historical learning in public history<br />Case study of the 1831 Reform Riot in Nottingham, content initiated by the community group<br />Conducted 2 types of guided walk:<br />People-led<br />Technology-led<br />Overview of the project<br />
  3. 3. Virtual Reality/Augmented Reality<br />Augurscope (Equator, Notts), 2003 – group history tour around to Nottingham Castle using laptop/GPS unit on wheels<br />- Superposition of past scenes and narration.<br />Mobile experiences<br />Riot! 1831 (Bristol, Mobile Bristol), 2004 <br />History Unwired (MIT/Dept. Architecture, Venice), 2005<br />- Both location aware neighbourhood audio tours using the voices of historical citizens<br />Examples of related work<br />
  4. 4. Can mobile technology be used to convey historical empathy and learning of contested perspectives from different historical sources, in an history walk format?<br />Main questions to the participants in the walk:<br />Who were the rioters? <br />What motivated them to engage in their direct action?<br />Academic research questions<br />Historical focus<br />Educational focus<br />User experience<br />What are we trying to find out?<br />
  5. 5. Historical literacy concerning the Reform Riots in Nottingham, asking: What happened in the period of the riots?<br />Historical empathy with the people involved: What were this period and these events like for different people?<br />Historical interpretation: how were these events and their causes viewed from differing and/or conflicting perspectives?<br />Historical research areas<br />Attaining historicalliteracy<br />Experiencing ‘empathy’ with historical subjects<br />Responding to & evaluating accounts from a variety of perspectives<br />
  6. 6. Learning in location <br />Whatdifferences arise from learning in location compared to elsewhere (e.g. indoors; round a table etc)?<br />Factors affecting learner preferences <br />Do you like learning in location? Why – or why not?<br />Group versus individual tour guides<br /> How did the audio guide technology affect group dynamics?<br />Educational research areas<br />
  7. 7. Preferences for location based audio guides <br />What did you or didn't you like about using the audio guide to learn about the Reform Riot?<br />Experience of using smart phone technology <br />What were your experiences (good, bad or neither) in using a handheld (mobile) device to help your learning?<br />Comparing people-led and technology-led modalities <br />What were the important differences between the two types of guided walk? How did they affect the user experience?<br />User experience research areas<br />
  8. 8. Planning meeting [Sept/Oct 2010]<br />People-led guided walk [Oct 2010]<br />Recording of audio files [Jan 2011]<br />Technology-led guided walk [Feb 2011]<br />Stages in the project<br />
  9. 9. Route, narrative, source materials and handouts were organised by members of People’s Histreh<br />Emphasis on experiences and aspirations of ‘ordinary people’ of Nottingham as starting point for understanding the riots<br />Self-directed ‘active learning’ – carried out intuitively<br />‘Learning by doing’<br />Use the walk as a way of disseminating what they have learned<br />Stage 1 – Planning meeting<br />
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  12. 12. Stage 2 – To the Castle! ‘people-led’ walk<br />Photos courtesy of Alan Lodge, Nottingham Indymedia<br />
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  14. 14. New audio files recorded by People’s Histreh<br />What software/platform to use for playback of geolocated audio?<br />User requirements<br />Potential tech solutions<br />TrailsCymru / Peoples Collection Wales<br />OOKL<br />Layar or Wikitude<br />WildMaps<br />Broadcastr<br />7scenes<br />Failsafe – use mp3 files stored on the handheld device with paper map<br />Stage 3 – Audio: recording and playback<br />
  15. 15. Stage 4 – To the Castle! ‘technology-led’ walk<br />
  16. 16. 7scenes – tracing the walk<br />
  17. 17. Difficult to draw comparisons between the two walks – too many variables that could not be predicted or controlled<br />Still analysing data from user questionnaires<br />Historical aspects: historical literacy (facts), empathy, interpretation<br />Educational aspects: informal learning; learning in location<br />User experience aspects: visibility vs invisibility of tech; group vs individual; affordances of each walk<br />Main findings<br />
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  20. 20. Not without problems<br />
  21. 21. Detailed questionnaire analysis<br />Academic publications<br />Explore tensions between amateur/professional and authoring/presentation of media<br />Issues of trust and authenticity in relation to the source material and how it is presented<br />Feedback to People’s Histreh – potential for future walks<br />Future research into different variables relating to pervasive media, particularly in relation to user-generated content<br />Where next…?<br />
  22. 22. Claire Taylor, School of History<br /><br />Elizabeth FitzGerald, Learning Sciences Research Institute<br /><br />Mike Craven, MATCH, Faculty of Engineering<br /><br />People’s Histreh<br /><br />A massive thanks to all those who participated in the walks and who gave us valuable feedback on this project, also to Faye Taylor and Robert Jones who assisted in the research.<br />Thanks for listening…<br />