Piloted Cell Phone Audio Tour Now Used by the Beinecke

CellPhoneTourThumbnailDuring my internship at the Beinecke, I initiated a cell phone audio tour.  After visiting the Mutter Museum in Philadelphia, I decided cell phone tours are an easy way to make audio content available to visitors.  The institution doesn’t need to worry about lending equipment, uploading and changing content is easy, and patrons can even access the tour from off-site.

The Beinecke was a perfect candidate for an audio tour.  The building alone draws tons of public visitors each year, items like the Gutenberg Bible and Audubon’s Birds of America are on permanent display, and curators mount exhibits on a rotating basis.

I researched several companies and chose Guide by Cell for their simple and reasonable fee structure, easy-to-use and well-designed interface, and great customer service.  As a pilot, I created an introduction and repurposed audio recorded for podcasts to create “stops” at the Gutenberg and Audubon permanent displays.  I hoped curators would incorporate this new technology into their future exhibits.

Sure enough – months after I left, when the Beinecke re-opened its doors after some major renovations, the cell phone audio tour is available to the public. It is even featured in Guide by Cell’s October 2009 Newsletter:

Many scholars and curators would agree that the Beinecke Library at Yale University holds one of the most revered collections of rare books and manuscripts anywhere. Guide by Cell’s new cell phone audio tour at the Beinecke library gives students, scholars, faculty and others new ways of accessing them and learning about the collection.

Highlighted in the tour is the Gutenberg Bible, a book dating 500 years! Imagine a book replete with the craftsmanship and art of the early 15th century! The bible
is truly a testament to the library’s vast collection of historic materials and a perfect example of what is available through the cell phone audio tour.

Medieval manuscripts were considered a revolution in the information age, and the Gutenberg Bible is an excellent example of this printing modernization.
Find out why by dialing the audio tour now at (203) 672-4380 and press 2#.

Another tour highlight is the commentary of Robert A.M. Stern, Dean of the Yale School of Architecture. Dean Stern details the unique architectural beauty of the Beinecke Library building as “one of the great treasure houses at Yale.”
To listen to Stern’s engaging commentary in full press 1#.

To hear the entire tour dial (203) 672-4380 and press 1 # through 5 #.

Image: http://www.flickr.com/photos/guwashi999/ / CC BY 2.0

 

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