What are Location-Based Services?

Location-based services provide content that is dynamically customized according to the user's location. These services are commonly delivered to mobile devices, but can also be accessed from other portable computers, handhelds, or any Internet-capable device. Current common applications for location-based services include advertising, news, social networking, and similar services. An increasing number of mobile applications are taking advantage of the built-in geolocation capability that is increasingly a standard feature in mobile devices. Information about nearby buildings, landmarks, or other fixed features is commonplace; a growing use of location-based services is to locate people nearby — people known or unknown to the user — who share interests or experiences in common. Educational applications for location-based services are currently along the same lines, delivering relevant place-based information and allowing easy geotagging of captured data. Media such as photos and video, as well as the simplicity of geotagging, will be important aspects of location-based services as they continue to develop.

INSTRUCTIONS: Enter your responses to the questions below. This is most easily done by moving your cursor to the end of the last item and pressing RETURN to create a new bullet point. Please include URLs whenever you can (full URLs will automatically be turned into hyperlinks; please type them out rather than using the linking tools in the toolbar).

Please "sign" your contributions by marking with the code of 4 tildes (~) in a row so that we can follow up with you if we need additional information or leads to examples- this produces a signature when the page is updated, like this: - Sam Sam Jul 21, 2011

(1) How might this technology be relevant to the museums you know best?

  • - elka.weinstein elka.weinstein Oct 13, 2012 Location-based services are being adopted by many small museums in our region. A number of our clients are interested in this technology and digitized photos are being used creatively to give visitors a look at the past.
  • - ssbautista ssbautista Oct 14, 2012 Location-based services can be used both inside museum galleries to help visitors navigate and to potentially to notify visitors of news and events at certain places and times in the galleries, and also outside the museum, particularly with public art, architecture, and gardens. Geotagging is also an important element of crowdsourced information for the museum.
  • Location-based services are and will become more the means by which people will obtain their sense of place (location and what surrounds them) in any given environment, including museums. I agree with the above statements but would like to think more broadly as well to include the average visitor's experience in daily life, including their engagement in museums, will include the smart devices they carry or wear "knowing" or communicating to the individual where he or she stands in relation to everything (services, opportunities, etc.) that surround him or her. Going to museum will involved not only what's in the galleries, but also whether other museums are nearby, how much they charge, their location, the transportation available, the dining services in the area, locations for restrooms and other amenities, and the list goes on. Whatever we was human beings see, do, need, and want is becoming a function of googling, or yelping, or whatevering, to find answers to our continuous stream of questions about the world around us.- david.dean david.dean Oct 15, 2012

(2) What themes are missing from the above description that you think are important?

  • Another perspective here.
  • As stated above, perhaps what's missing the broader view of what location-based services, AR, and the like have, not just on museum visits, but on the whole human experience in space/time. Museums are a part of that environment and need to be represented well and marketed as fulfillment venues for some human needs. We also need to be providing the kind of content about our institutions that the public really desires, not just what we as museum professionals find interesting.- david.dean david.dean Oct 15, 2012

(3) What do you see as the potential impact of this technology on education and interpretation in museums?

  • Add your perspective here...
  • Another perspective here.
  • The impact of location-based services will be to require museums to become fully invested and involved in providing the kind of information and services that people who find your museum are expecting and needing.- david.dean david.dean Oct 15, 2012

(4) Do you have or know of a project working in this area?

  • - ssbautista ssbautista Oct 14, 2012 It is interesting why Foursquare never really took off with museums, despite many signing on to it. Some museums themselves did the recommending, while others let the public do it, and some museums focused on museum places and events, while others focused on places adjacent to the museum. Does anyone have a Foursquare success story, or has something else replaced it?
  • Another perspective here.

Please share information about related projects in our Horizon Project sharing form.