This month, I started working at the University of Lincoln on the Our Lincolnshire project which, in short, is a public engagement project about attitudes to heritage in Lincolnshire. We keep a separate blog for the project, so please do go and check out more about it's goings on but I will post updates here on the strand of the project for which I am responsible. Namely, the launch of ‘My Lincolnshire Collection’, a new web app that will enable users to access a virtual gallery of heritage objects complete with compact and informative descriptions.
Images of these objects are being collected from heritage sites all over Lincolnshire in the hopes that, in addition to the historical artefacts that draw thousands of visitors to the county's town and city centres each year, the collection will also represent the county’s lesser-known treasures.
Now for the fun part. From a panel of approximately 100 objects, users will be able to choose up to ten favourites, curating a collection to reflect their own tastes and priorities regarding Lincolnshire’s rural heritage. Objects can be selected by dragging the relevant thumbnail from the main gallery up into the green bar at the top of the page.
If users would like a closer look at an object, they need only click on its thumbnail to bring up a larger image of it. They will also find a description of the object beneath the image to help them in making the all-important decision of whether or not to include the item in their collection.
I'd love to hear about how and why users have chosen their objects, so on the web app’s final page I've left a space for them to let me know their thoughts before their collection is submitted.
I will be analysing submissions to ‘My Lincolnshire Collection’ regularly, so that I can keep track of any objects that are proving particularly popular amongst our users. The Our Lincolnshire team is hoping that the data collected by the web app will enable us to ascertain the areas of heritage that appeal most to the public. But, in the meantime we want our users will have a great time putting together their collection, so would love to hear any suggestions you may have on how we can make the experience more fun. Please feel free to voice your opinions in the comments box below!