Week 8: Gone Home

What do I expect from a museum’s digital presence? For me, personally, I expect a sense of coherence and unity between the digital space and the physical objects on display. Incorporating new and exciting technologies sounds creative and fun, but sometimes it fails to connect the viewers with the objects. I think that technologies should always come after the objects unless the point trying to be made is that the technology is art. It is a difficult task to bring together modern and antiquated themes together without causing disorientation and confusion. But I don’t think museums should sacrifice their intents by trying to keep up the image of being a new modern place. Museum’s digital presence should be engaging and informative but also act as a supplement to the patron’s experience without being overpowering.

I love online courses and have taken several during my time here at UCLA. I appreciate the idea of learning at my own pace and studying in the comfort of my own bed, even though this seems counterintuitive. I’m really interested in Java courses on edX and Python courses on coursera. As a Statistics major, I have done a lot of data analysis and coding in R, but I would like to expand my coding skills into something more widely used like Python.

Last year in summer, I took a course in Gender Studies that focused on the impact of media and the representations of race, gender, sexual orientation, and class in media. One of our final assignments was playing a game called Gone Home. It is an interactive game where the player navigates through the house through the perspective of a female protagonist to find clues and hints about where her family is and what happened while she was away on a trip in Europe. This is by far one of the best digital storytelling piece I have come across. It engages the viewers and the players by putting them into the protagonist’s shoes. The player has to pick up clues and hints around the house to put together a story of what might have happened, and the story is very captivating augmented by the music and sounds. I couldn’t help but feel scared, worried, relieved, and curious constantly while playing the game. It still has me mesmerized by the sheer quality and contextual depth of this interactive game. I think this piece tells a story that is relevant and important to our generation.

6 thoughts on “Week 8: Gone Home”

  1. I’ve heard a lot about this game! I keep meaning to try it myself, and your blog post is the incentive I need.

  2. I agree that there should be a unity between the digital applications/technoloiges and the physical objects them selves. The digital applications/technologies should work to highlight the object and give it context, instead of being used as spectacle, which is where I think most museums go wrong. I think moving forward that creating a better unity between objects and technology will be the challenge that museums must face and solve.

  3. I love the topic of Gender Studies, so I was really excited to see the digital storytelling piece that you shared. I love how interactive it is, and how it is able to make you feel a certain way through the experiences you have with it.

  4. I agree, there should be a level of harmony/unity between technology and the art — it’s very interesting, because there’s so much trial and error going on right now to try and see what works and what doesn’t, and that is different for every piece of art that is put on display in a museum.

    Also, the digital storytelling piece you linked looks so interesting! If I ever have the chance, I’ll definitely want to try and play the game.

  5. I agree that technology in museums should serve to further your experience with the objects, rather than replace or overpower your experience with the objects. One great example that I’ve found of technology serving that purpose is a series of videos of glass blowing techniques in the glass exhibit at the Getty Villa. Since glass is mass produced now, it’s so easy to look at the glass objects in the museum with the amount of enthusiasm you would have when looking at bowls at Pottery Barn. But when you see the amount of work/ craft that goes into making each one by hand, you have a much greater appreciation for the pieces.

    Also, that game looks fascinating!

  6. Your digital storytelling piece was really interesting! I loved the example you used!

    Also I agree that there should be some type of harmony between the art and the technology molding into one – instead of just standing on their own. I thought this was really interesting point!

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