Storying Visitor Experiences through Weather Sayings

This project is an experiment in how to dynamically create stories from individuals’ visits to outdoor heritage sites. Immersive interactive technology is increasingly being used by museums and heritage sites across the world to both document and enhance the visitor experience.

The project will prototype a digital proof of concept designed to capture a visitor’s data profile of a heritage site visit using a variety of different input mechanisms and sensors (e.g. GPS track, light, temperature, moisture, audio recording, photographs, 3rd party weather data), and then use that data profile to algorithmically generate a story modelled on traditional weather sayings. The experience of recording a visit in this way is intended to be uncanny and unsettling, toeing the line between realising an alternative present or a lost future (Auger 2013). As they engage with the prototype, the visitor will be encouraged to reflect on the ubiquity and predictability of weather, but also its ephemerality and changeability, and how weather affects their experience of place.

You will have the opportunity to focus on the area/s of the project you are most interested in:

  1. exploring the data sources and streams for sensing and recording the site visit
  2. creating an algorithm for dynamically generating storied weather sayings (these stories will be influenced by traditional weather sayings, such as ‘red sky at night, shepherd’s delight’)
  3. designing a compelling user experience for communicating the weather sayings as a unique record of site visits (e.g. as an easily consumable image, text message, or audio file that could be shared on social media and/or linked to a non-fungible token).

You will have the chance to develop your professional network at an end of project online event with industry professionals and researchers in heritage and digital creativity, where  you will be able to share your findings and showcase your skills.

Required Skills

The project is designed to be flexible in relation to the student’s interests and abilities, but one or more of the following skills will be essential:

  • Experience in UX/UI design and prototyping (e.g. storyboarding, wireframes).
  • Experience in (or willingness to learn) web development (i.e. HTML, CSS, Javascript).

The following would also be an advantage:

  • Interest in the environment and/or digital heritage.
  • Experience of Javascript frameworks (e.g. React).

How to Apply

For more details on the summer school application process (including eligibility and funding) please go here: https://digitalcreativity.ac.uk/news/dc-labs-summer-school-2021  

If you would like to ask any informal questions about the research project, please contact Dr Debbie Maxwell debbie.maxwell@york.ac.uk 

For questions about the programme, logistics etc, please contact Ella Eyre, DC Labs Administrator, on enquiries@digitalcreativity.ac.uk  

Supervisors

Dr Debbie Maxwell, Lecturer in Interactive Media, TFTI

Further Reading

Auger, J. (2013) ‘Speculative design: crafting the speculation’, Digital Creativity 24:1, pp11-35, DOI: 10.1080/14626268.2013.767276 https://doi.org/10.1080/14626268.2013.767276