Visit to Thinkspace (Powerhouse Museum)

These are some images of a recent visit that I made with some colleagues from the UTS Library to the Powerhouse Museum’s Thinkspace. The super staff there, Joy Suliman and Peter Mahony, gave us a great workshop to introduce us to some of the possibilities for collaborative digital learning and creativity in such a space. We played around with Garage Band, Google Earth, Inspiration (a mind-mapping tool, see below) and some other programs.

Peter and a blurry Joy answering some of our questions.

The two shots above show the results of some quick mind-mapping about technology and social spaces in libraries.

I’d been to this space for a quick tour once before but I wanted to go back and take our entire management team along with a few younger colleagues to help us out. We’re probably going to experiment with a similar space in our library very soon.
Peter and Joy said their space had three key features: it could be personalized (made relevant to me); it was connected (to the web and therefore elsewhere); and it could be situated (made even more relevant with maps, GPS, etc.). It also had durable and flexible furnishings as you can see above. Their room contained four workstations and it works well that way. I think at one stage Peter said something like collaboration in such a space is “augmented by technology that is configurable to different levels”. The whole environment seems very conducive to creativity.
For us I think it could assist in facilitating collaboration and even cross faculty interaction. The technology does has a shelf life, but as it is already in many NSW schools our future students will be expecting access to it when they get to university too.
Thanks again to Joy and Peter for a great workshop!
Watch this space . . .

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