Museum develops interactive virtual tours with help from NWRC
By Aoife Curran
The Museum of Free Derry has developed a guided 360 video tour and a fully interactive 3D VR tour of the museum which they will utilize for virtual tours with help from North West Regional College (NWRC) Business Support Centre (BSC)
Adrian Kerr, Curator at Museum of Free Derry, explained how the project came about: ‘’We wanted to develop a fully interactive 3D VR tour of the museum which would provide a visually rich, account of major historic events. We also wanted to provide schools and visitors with a totally immersive tour of the complex, complete with archive footage and interactive features.
‘’However we required support to make this happen and so we contacted NWRC’s Business Support Centre who supported us through the InnovateUs programme which is funded by the Department for the Economy. This provided 60 hours of upskilling support from NWRC Creative & Digital Media Technical Consultant, Aaron McKeever, and NWRC Virtual & Augmented Reality Technical Consultant, Jim Murray, who supported the museum with VR technologies, VR headsets and recording equipment, how to optimise VR content for various outputs, animation and placing custom built animations and motion graphics in a VR environment.
‘’Working with NWRC was a very positive experience for the Museum of Free Derry. It was clear from the beginning that they wanted to develop the virtual tour that was best for us, and as a result we now have a very useful addition to our digital offering that we have rolled out to the public. We have also been trained in how it was designed and developed, and are now much better placed to consider similar projects in the future. When we were discussing this with other local heritage venues we had no hesitation in encouraging them to contact NWRC about their own virtual tours.”
Dr Fergal Tuffy, Technology Innovation Manager at NWRC’s BSC added: ”This project highlights the benefits of the InnovateUs Programme which is funded by Department for the Economy and the support that Colleges such as ourselves at NWRC can provide to assist businesses to make their ideas a reality.”