Jules McDEEeeeeeeee

FNL YR PRJCT

Category: History

Refining my copy

I’ve been doing alot of work on my copy over the last week or so. I really feel, between the copy and my report, my writing is alway improving. It really does come with practice and also using a dictionary as an extension of your body.

Lorcan had a read over it, on the day we filmed. He said to send it onto him and that he’d make a few slight changes to it for me.

I have attached a PDF here with the copy I worked on myself. I will follow it up with the changes I receive from Lorcan.

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Video & Audio with Lorcan

This week I met up with Lorcan (http://www.1916rising.com/) to record some video footage and audio voiceovers for the app.

The idea behind the video is to have an overview or synopsis of the Easter Rising, so those who are unfamiliar with the background history or even for those who just need a little memory jogging, can be informed.

I wanted to limit the video to about 2-2 & a half minutes, and to also include some archived photographs to help structure it better for the user. This decision was influenced by the fact that those using the app will most likely be on foot, so having something that is short but still engaging will add to the experience.

I met Lorcan at the International Bar on Wicklow Street. Lorcan suggested The International as it is the meeting point for his own walking tour and he said we’d be able to use the comedy bar upstairs for filming.

DUBLIN, The International Bar (ALT, 4.2011)

While setting up, I told Lorcan that I wanted a brief overview to what the Easter Rising was and why it happened, and to explain in such a way as if the user watching knew nothing about the Rising itself.

We did a few takes, and finally got a recording that had a good even pace to it and covered everything necessary to the brief.

For the audio, I brought along copy that I had worked on for each of the Rising locations. Lorcan had a read over it, making some slight corrections but thought the overall work was good. He decided to work from the structure of my bullet points and then elaborate on some details. There were some smaller stories that he had told on the walking tour that I took particular interest in, so I asked if he could work those in too, which he was delighted to do.

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Ragin’ I missed this!

So, unfortunately for me I came across an advertisement for this Easter Rising Conference a little too late, as it was sold out. Would have been really cool and helpful to have gone along. I will admit though, I did send a ‘cheeky’ email asking if they could squeeze me in somewhere. One of the organizers got back to me saying that it was completely jammed and for insurance reasons they couldnt allow it. Oh well, no harm in tryin’ I suppose ; )

http://1916conference.wordpress.com/programme/

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The User Experience – Review of History Apps

The Rebellion Walking Tour that I went on last weekend really helped me in getting a look at things from the users perspective. To a certain extent I also became a user so I had to take note of the things that struck me most about the tour and about what questions I was eager to ask.

I did some more reading on the topic of interactive walking tours and how there are more and more apps being designed to try and recreate the experience of a walking tour. Below is a good article that I read on interactive walking tours and the experiences that can be created using our mobile smart devices.

http://www.xconomy.com/boston/2007/10/31/mobile-and-interactive-in-boston-on-the-run-with-untravel-and-urban-interactive/

“travel and entertainment content developed especially for mobile platforms”

“the devices’ ability to bring you information and applications that can vastly enrich your experience of the world outside your home or office.”

“forces you to look outward and learn about the world around you.”

““walking slide shows,” that combine audio and still images”

“full of nerdy but fascinating detail”

“electronic platforms can also enhance our experience and understanding of real outdoor environments full of hidden historical or architectural detail”

 

1916 Rebellion Walking Tour

So today I made the most of the lovely weather and arranged to go on the 1916 Rebellion Walking Tour.

http://www.1916rising.com/

I got in touch with Lorcan Collins, who runs the tour, and who I had met back in January to talk about my app concept, which he was very interested in. He had invited me a while back to come along which I was meaning to do but Im glad now I waited till today because I also got to catch a few sun rays.

The tour began at The International Bar on Wicklow Street. There was a good turn out, with groups from all over the world – England, Germany, Belgium, America and Singapore. Lorcan began the tour downstairs in the bar with an overview of the history of Ireland beginning back as far as the Great Famine in the mid 1800’s and then running up until the main topic of the tour, the 1916 Easter Rising.

For the tour, along with listening to Lorcan, I also wanted to take note of what kind of facts the tourists took particular interest in and what kind of questions they were keen to ask. I had been advised by Daniel earlier in the week, that an experiment like that would help me put together a better user experience for the app.

The tour was so much fun and Lorcan is an absolute character, who is passionate about what he does. He was full of amazing stories about such an important part of our heritage. For me, it was amazing to hear stories and facts that I would not have learnt about in a textbook.

Following my research, I found that those on the tour where very keen to know about smaller details at each location, such as the bullet holes that have been left behind since the rebellion, or details about the 16 who were executed following the rising. A vast selection of photographic content will really enrich the experience for the user, with captions underneath that may tell a story about an individual in the photo or an explanation to a significant event relating to the photo.

I’m going to now look for as much photographic content as I can for each of the locations, and hopefully I come across some that may have some unique stories to go with them.

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Some more mockuuuups

So, the last few days have been dedicated to the actual content of the app. I’ve put together a document containing all the historical content I think would work for this app.

From the start, Ive wanted this app to be more focused on the locations and the photography, so I don’t want something that is too text heavy.

I thought, seeing as 2016 is going to be the 100 year anniversary, it’d be cool to do a ‘past/present’ type layout. I think this will work very well for the content, as many of the locations involved in the Rising have since changed. Many building were left damaged or completely destroyed with new ones having been rebuilt since.

Each location will contain a sub-header bar which will navigate the user to 1916 and 2016 sections. The user, will land on the 1916 section, where they will find information about the particular location. This will include, the address of the building, when it was constructed, its purpose, who was located there during the Rising, and any signifiant events. The 2016 section, will contain any information regarding the aftermath of the Rising, in relation to the possible reconstructions at the location, and what that building’s purpose might be today.

Here are some mockups to give you a better insight to my proposed page layout:

app_content_new

 

 

The JQuery Mobile UI Framework allows for simple construction of a page like this, using the data-role=”navbar” attribute. I can then work on adding in the content for each section.

 

History Apps

Downtown Billings Historical Tour

http://walkhistoricbillings.com/

This app is an interactive map of historical sites. It encourages users to explore the architecture of Downtown Billings – “Discover for yourself”. At each location on the map the user can find photos, facts and architectural information attached.

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History Apps (This is what I wanna do!)

Museum of London: Street Museum

https://itunes.apple.com/gb/app/museum-london-streetmuseum/id369684330?mt=8

http://www.museumoflondon.org.uk/Resources/app/you-are-here-app/home.html

On researching the area of history tour guide apps, I came across this app, which can be simply described as a ‘Street Museum”. This app is exactly what I hope to aim for with my finished product. The main aim behind this app, is to encourage the user to explore the locations for themselves on the map. Again at each location the user can access photos and information relating to each spot.

The event more impressive feature with this app is the 3D image view. The app recognizes your location (GPS) and then overlay the historic images.

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Centenaries & Tourism for Ireland

This is an interesting article on the possible tourism that the centenaries will create. These commemorations are a sensitive matter for the country. The argument, made by author John Gibney, is that while they might bring visitors to the country, we should not solely see these events as a way of making money.

In relation to my App, it will be available to download free of charge. Education needs to be accessible to everyone interested, so putting a price on it takes away from its sole purpose.

http://www.thejournal.ie/readme/column-yes-centenaries-are-tourism-gold-but-lets-not-forget-our-past-for-a-quick-buck-339440-Jan2012/

History Lesson.

Gotta catch up on my history! So I’m working my way through the Irish Times Book of the 1916 Rising. Its a handy number for reviewing the Rising, with plenty of imagery.

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