If you read Wired.co.uk, you may have come across the story of a small design studio commissioned by Tate Britain to design four robots that will roam around the gallery at night and stream what they see to anyone online. Phrase over.
Leaving aside the first thoughts and questions (“This changes dynamics with the gallery.”, “What does it mean to the security of the place?” (which I’m still mulling over), it’s a great idea: robots roaming around Tate Britain at night will allow me to explore parts of the gallery or maybe the entire place at leisure from the quietness of my house – while I’m snuggled on my couch, sipping tea and eating biscuits (or a healthier snack).
I can see at least several audiences/stakeholders who would benefit from this technology:
- People in / outside London who would like to visit the gallery but don’t have the time to during a regular day or at the weekend.
- People outside the UK who don’t have the opportunity to visit Tate (and, let’s face it, can’t all fly to London at the same time). In which case, it would be wise of Tate, not to mention good business, to maybe charge a small donation?
- Students and researchers studying art and culture, who would probably fall in love with the opportunity of exploring the gallery at leisure.
In the long term, this idea could also be beneficial to:
- Other galleries (and museums) equally known in the UK and worldwide; using similar robots, they will become accessible to people across the globe who may not otherwise have the opportunity to walk down their corridors.
- Multiple other types of organisations, cultural or non-cultural alike, that could perhaps employ the same type of technology to make themselves more available to their audiences.
This idea is a winner, me thinks! In the meantime, build away, boys. I look forward to seeing the robots in action! Or should I say, the gallery?