The Estonian National Museum is using a clever mix of electronic ink displays and RFID to allow visitors to learn about Estonian culture in their preferred language.
The museum has put in more than 600 E Ink displays – from Kindle-sized up to 32-inch units – to use for visitor information. Each display application interacts with RFID tickets, which are provided to visitors. The cards hold the language of choice for each visitor, and when they are near an exhibit, that’s the language shown on the information referencing that exhibit or artifact.
The large displays are being used for wayfinding.
“The new National Museum embodies the Estonian spirit and is a shrine for all people to learn about the country’s rich, colorful and sometimes painful past,” says Kaarel Tarand, head of public and foreign relations at the Estonian National Museum. “In seeking a partner that will help us promote a deeper understanding of Estonian culture, E Ink was a natural choice for us. Its displays not only complement the museum’s aesthetics, but it also offers our visitors a personalized experience and allows us to go digital in a sustainable manner.”
The E Ink displays have built-in readers that detect the RFID cards and serve the content based on the preferred language information stored on the card’s tag.
The program was put together by 3 + 1 Architects on the concept and Artec Design.
“This is one of the first large-scale commercial deployments of E Ink’s signage in museums. It is a testament to the unique value proposition of E Ink’s display technology which can enable digital updates without taking any focus away from the artwork,” says Harit Doshi, head of the signage business at E Ink Corporation.