Jim Scheef <jscheef@...> wrote:
> So, it's critical that we make the most of the money we have while
we continue to solicit members and donations of both money and
materials for the museum. I would like to suggest that we design our
first few exhibits on paper so we can determine exactly how much space
will be needed so we can make or buy appropriate tables or other
display platforms. Whatever we use must be able to support the weight
of the computers, protect the exhibits from little fingers, AND
withstand the inevitable bumps that will occur when people (with kids)
walk thru the museum. By designing the exhibits first we can actually
make the signs while we prepare the artifacts. The radio museum found
that their first signs sucked as they learned how to make better
signs. We need to learn from their experience. We have little to no
experience with signs and I suspect that signage will become our first
I see exhibit design discussed here primarily as a matter of budget.
I'll describe the exhibit I'm doing, as a budget consideration and in
the scope of similar exhibits. In my opinion.
The exhibit I will design for the 11/20 for the upcoming September
show, has been described before by me, in a general way. My intention
from day one, was to provide some kind of example of an exhibit. It
will be simple and do-able with modest resources - even by the kind of
funds MARCH had before its recent windfall.
It's a design consistent with exhibits brought to VCF shows over the
last few years. Nothing stops MARCH from doing better, *later*. This
gets the job done NOW, for September, which is *four months* away. As
Jim points out, "better" work may require more time, experience and
The 11/20 will sit on a table, with some artifacts. There will be a
plexiglass cover on the top, to make the boards visible but protected.
I plan to cover the front panel (console) as well, to keep the
fingerpoken kids off the switches. I am working on these things. Of
course it will not not NOT be plugged in, as the power supply is
seperate there is no chance for that.
The wall behind the table will have two posterboards. On them will be
some subset of what is displayed on the 11/20 Web page I've made.
Mostly photos and some descriptive text. There will likely be
handouts. I'm also considering showing some brief videos of how a
similar computer, a PDP-8, is operated with its console and with a
Teletype. This would provide some "operation". The videos are in
progress, versions are linked on the 11/20 Web page, from a MARCH
member as noted.
To a first order, the content of the exhibit will be a subset of the
11/20 Web page I've already constructed. Again, the Web page was
intended to be a prototype for other exhibit's Web pages, pages which
budget-wise only cost time and effort. And, as a reference to discuss
content and an exhibit - something like Jim's remarks about "paper
design". I may prototype an actual exhibit on the Web, in a simple way
if I can.
Further design is a matter of determining what content and which
photos will be exhibited, and of course their arrangement and
composition. Again, cost is not expected to be an issue, these are not
expensive resources. I'll offer a budget when I have the design
roughed out, AND see how I can make the signage and photos.
That is about where I am on this project.
Please note: this is a forty year old computer, not running, with
considerable history generally and specific to this box. Most people
simply would not "know" on sight it's even a "computer". Those
considerations are determining the nature of the exhibit. Many of
MARCH's computers are newer, running, generally known, easily
replaced. So exhibits for them would be different and emphasise
hands-on and operation, not history of use or design.
However, as Jim points out, ALL these exhibits need space, display,
interpretative text and photos on posters and signage. (He did not
mention Web space, but that is not a budget issue, MARCH has Web space
So, the 11/20 is an example of a KIND of exhibit, and methods, and
activities one can follow to design another exhibit. But not to follow
*exactly*. That's one reason I proposed this work - read prior posts.
But, since this is a discussion thread about COSTS and BUDGETS for
MARCH, and not an exhibit design discussion, I'll stop here. Anyone
who wants to discuss the 11/20, or exhibit design, can use another
discussion thread, old or new.