As digital media and video games in particular advance leaps and bounds in terms of interactivity and graphical realism, its time for museums to take a look at the possibilities implied in them.
Not only does this mean that consumer level computers can now access photo realistic models of objects in a collection, but that a virtual gallery unconstrained by the laws of physics can be created. A world where the user can fly around totem poles and see a statue up close, but where the user can take the object, enlarge it, make it smaller, rotate it and see it from whichever angle he or she wishes. Even recreations of events and places are possible, virtual tours of medieval villages, recreations of wars, the possibilities for teaching are endless.
This new technology would also allow researchers to do the preliminary research without traveling to the museums in question by simply analyzing the object digitally and deciding whether it fits the researcher’s needs, thus saving time and money in the research process.
Finally it brings us closer to new users who have lived their entire lives immersed in media such as this.