Title:TourML: An Emerging Specification for Museum Mobile Experiences
Authors:Robert Stein, Nancy Proctor
Publication:MW2011: Museums and the Web 2011

The recent explosion of options used by museums to produce mobile experiences is undeniable.  In the last 18 months, dozens of new mobile platforms have entered the marketplace as museums are planning, producing, and launching new experiences for visitors on their mobile devices. Besides launching a successful tour, how can museum professionals ensure that the content we create will outlive the technology and vendors we select today?

A successful metadata standard for mobile tours would provide a number of advantages for museums. A mobile standard will allow museums to migrate the content and structure of a tour between the variety of tools available today and tools that may be available in the future. Similarly, a mobile standard would allow the same tour to be used on a number of current and future mobile devices. In addition, museums could choose authoring tools which best fit their staff and workflow needs while still deploying to whatever mobile device is best for their content - even if these tools are provided by different vendors. Perhaps most importantly, a successful mobile standard would ensure that museum content will outlive any particular technology we use today.

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