Are interactives a problem? – 6 ways to showcase your content while keeping people safe

Most museums and Science centers use interactives to display exhibitions, communicate with their visitors, and offer experiments in “touch & learn” environments. COVID-19 has shed new light on touch screens in our public venues and the difficulties with bacterial and viral contamination have been brought to discussion. How can we make it safe to interact with touch screens and secure that our digital exhibits are not becoming sources of virus spread and how do we work toward other solutions to get the most out of the Inside Explorer software?

Options to interactive screens

1. Project it and go deep

Inside Explorer suits very well to be exhibited on touch screens, but there are other options to get access to the same content but showcase it differently. Pause the screen during the restricted time and project Inside Explorer on a wall instead. It is easy to connect the workstation, or a laptop, to a projector. To even enhance the experience more, have one of your guides to narrate and tell the story about the datasets. It is a perfect opportunity to engage with visitors and go deep in knowledge. The guide is the only one that interacts with the datasets on the touch screen and the visitor can watch it on a screen – from a distance. Many of our customers already do this to tell the exciting stories behind the datasets or to interact with the audience in a more personal way. It is all about the customer experience!

2. Virtual guides

There is a rich story behind every dataset. Some are history-based, some tell a story about an individual. They are all equally fascinating an interesting. With our virtual guides, your visitors scan a QR-code with their own device and access descriptive pages including both facts, pictures, and films. This is something for both the enthusiast and the school visitors.

3. Online communication

Many of our customers go online with their content and exhibitions. The online communication and interactive exhibitions are easy to transfer into educational and fascinating material for your visitors to get acquainted with. Use your touch screen to record a film while broadcasting it online, offer live Q&A’s to interact even more. Or use your laptop to create movie sequels and images of your Inside Explorer content to publish online.

4. Stylus pens

Using a pen to interact with the screen is another option. This is getting more common to avoid physical contact. There is a bunch of options when selecting pens and while some are disposable, some a reusable after thorough cleaning. Using a stylus pen means not having to do any changes in your venue settings and would even mean the visitor could interact with many of your exhibitions without a single hands-on touch.

5. Offer Sanitizers and shields

Thorough cleaning routines are essential these days and you have probably established even more firm routines to keep it tidy and virus free. Interactives and all electronical equipment need specially developed anti-bacterial cleansers. Most of the sanitizers are alcohol based, which itself might be problem in an environment with valuable objects or In combination with clothing or fabrics, but there are also organically produced anti-bacterials that are non-alcoholic. The market for wipes and cleaning agents has literary exploded the past three months. Long lasting options promising to keep clean from all germs are presented with a validity of 24 hours, 7 days or even an entire month. You can also put a replaceable and protective anti-bacterial screen on top of your touch screen with a regular routine to exchange it.

A touch screen can also be used by a hand in gloves. Or a hand that has been rinsed off with sanitizers.

6. Interspectral’s consumer version of Inside Explorer

Inside Explorer is live on Steam with a product specially developed for direct consumers. Together with Kolmården Wildlife Park, Norrköping Sweden, and Field Museum, Chicago, US, we have produced and released content as an educational treat to explore at home. Steam is the world’s largest gaming platforms with 90 million unique visitors every month, and their education department is no exception. Maybe this is something you want to take part in with your own content? Or even offer your online or “in real life” visitors as an extension of the experience from your venue? Perhaps it could be a prize to win in a game or treasure hunt for knowledge.

Taking Inside Explorer to new levels

Interspectral has always delivered turnkey solutions including software and hardware for the museum and science centre community. Touch tables have been a great part of the experience allowing visitors to use tactile interactions to explore the data and discover new things. A method proven to work well as a tool to enhance the experience and learning options.

Recently we are getting a lot of questions about how Inside Explorer can be accessed online or from a distance. We are working diligently to develop Inside Explorer for online platforms and aim to release the first prototype as soon as possible. This means Inside Explorer will be accessible using mobile devices, can be integrated into your web or platform, and be used for educational purposes. Until that product is available, we hope you can use at least one of the above tips to stay in touch with your audience. If you have any other suggestions for how to reach out while restrictions are still up, just let us know. We are happy to bounce ideas and come up with smart solutions together!

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