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National Discovery Museum

History Museum - Bangkok, Thailand

National Discover Museum, Bangkok Thailand
Front lawn of the National Discovery Museum, Bangkok, Thailand.

Exploring History Through Technology

Long before there was a Thailand, or a Siam, people have lived in the region. Some of the earliest humans known to mankind have left their traces in the soil of what we now call Thailand.

The National Discovery Museum (“Museum of Siam”) creates an experience where visitors could understand the how the identity of Thai people, their customs, beliefs and civilizations has developed over millennia of continuous habitation in this place. Employing various interactive techniques, the Museum engages the visitors to investigate, play games, interact and discover the history and story of Thailand.

The museum employs rich graphic panels to illuminate strong content
The museum employs rich graphic panels to illuminate strong content.
Pico, Story Inc, designLAB

Led by the creative direction of Story! Inc and Pico Thailand, with designLAB MISC directing the project from the structure, graphic, visitor experience and interactive concepts, Aesthetec was contracted to be involved with almost every stage of the design development. By being able to provide insight for interaction scenarios while concepts were still being developed, the interaction design and technology weaves seamlessly with the narratives.

Our Role

Aesthetec designed, produced, and installed over 28 interactive exhibits in the 20-room museum. We created a wireless management system, customized hardware and software to run these exhibits entirely on the Mac OSX. To stand up to the constant use of the Museum's thousands of daily visitors, contact-less positioning and touch-sensitive buttons are installed wherever possible. Most of our customized hardware is modularized, swappable, and easy to configure and replace. Additionally, all screen-based features of the museum are specifically designed for high-definition video, ensuring that the content would look as good as the technology today allows.

CommPose on TV screens
Working with custom software.

Custom Hardware
Custom designed hardware.

From the Ground Up

Working with the interior architects and content designers to build this museum from the ground up, we were able to integrate appropriate technology into the interaction design at a very early stage—rather than retro-fitting pre existing concepts with technology later on—an approach which made the interactive exhibits flow seamlessly with the content, and became an integral part of the museum.

Feature Exhibits

Interactive Grave Site

Introduction Room

This exhibit uses a pioneered projection technique to bring the grave site of an ancient healer to life. Custom hardware senses proximatey, touch sensors embedded in artefacts, and halogen light control.  Watch video

Interactive Grave

Rain Drum

Suvarnabhumi Room

This novel interface allows audience to control the story of a rain drum by banging on the drum itself. Custom hardware detects vibrations in the drum, and features a redundant system to ensure it will withstand years of ‘beating’.

Rain Drum

Life in Suvarnnabhmi

Suvarnabhumi Room

This large scale interactive features a 1080p projection on top of a relief map. Custom designed software allows detail videos to be embedded over HD video in real-time, as triggered by eighteen LED-touch buttons around the surface.

Read this Case Study to find out more.

Life in Suvarnabhumi

Old / New Krung Thep

Founding of Ayutthaya Room

This touch-based interactive displays the movement of royal, religious and government sites from old Krung Thep to new Krung Thep. The table features twenty touchable hotspots that also allows for multiple-touches at a time.  Watch video

Read this Case Study to find out more.

Old/New Krung Thep

Temple Builders

Suvarnabhumi Room

We created a unique controller that allows detail video to be displayed on small screen over a graphic panel. By moving the screen up and down, the audience reveals different details about temple builders in the Suvannabhumi era.  Watch video

Temple Builder

Cannon Game

War Room

This fun game turns a life-sized model of a cannon into a video game controller. The audience can aim by moving the cannon left and right, and fire using a button on the top of the cannon.

Cannon Game

Vintage Radios

Communications Room

Custom-designed software brings vintage radio clips into the future. As the audience turns the dials on the radios, the software replicates the feeling of scanning radio channels as it was back then.

Vintage Radios

Vintage Kinetoscopes

“Changes” Room

By turning a handle backwards or forwards, the audience controls the playback of animations that portray architectural, fashion and social changes in Bangkok during major periods of its development.  Watch video

Vintage Kinetoscope

News Broadcaster Game

Communications Room

This interactive game invites the audience to become a news broadcaster for Thailand's first television station. The custom designed software records video using real-time processed effects, and plays back once recording is done.

News Broadcaster Game

Additional Photos

Press

English Language Press:

(Link to PDF files)

Thai Language Press:

(Link to PDF files)

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