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Title: Transforming with a Soft Touch: Comparing Four Learning Networks: Transforming with a Soft Touch: Comparing Four Learning Networks
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Award ID(s):
Publication Date:
Journal Name:
Systems Research and Behavioral Science
Page Range or eLocation-ID:
537 to 543
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
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  1. Over the last decade, large multitouch displays have become commonplace in museums and other public spaces. While there is preliminary evidence that exhibits based on tangible technologies can be more attractive and engaging for visitors than displays alone, very little empirical research has directly compared tangible to large multitouch displays in museums. In this paper, we present a study comparing the use of a tangible and a multitouch tabletop interface in an exhibit designed to explore musical rhythms. From an observation pool of 791 museum visitors, a total of 227 people in 82 groups interacted with one of the twomore »versions of our exhibit. We share the exhibit design, experimental setup, and methods and measures. Our findings highlight advantages of tangible interaction in terms of attracting and engaging children and families. However, the two exhibits were equally effective at supporting collaborative interaction within visitor groups. We conclude with a discussion of the implications for museum exhibit design vis-à-vis visitor engagement and learning.« less