GEOLAB - INTERACTIVE METAL MAP

Interactive multitouch solution where Mines and Metals are in focus.

About the case

We at Spree got asked to create an interactive multitouch solution for the Norwegian Mining Museum for their new exhibition GEOLAB. The museum is located in the city of Kongsberg, a few miles outside Oslo. Geolab aims to be an inclusive exhibition that is primarily aimed at children and young people, where participation and learning are in focus.

When you visit Geolab, you get to learn about the world’s mines, minerals and metals and where in the world the metals come from. The exhibition highlights the importance of metals and minerals in our lives and society.

The Interactive solution is created based on different product journeys that take place on a world map. In a product journey, the visitor get’s to learn about which metals are used to create some of the common products we use daily and from which places around the world these metals are extracted.

We at Spree had to use a lot of time and creativity to ensure that the application felt both playful and exciting, while at the same time it would be a platform with space for learning. Our ambition with the application was that visitors would leave the station with newfound knowledge and a smile on their face.

Metals

The solution consists of four different product trips where you get to follow the metals journey for mobile phones, electric cars and various renewable energy solutions. The fourth product journey allows a visitor to see what metals are needed to build a society. At the beginning of each product journey, the visitor get to try to drag in the right metals for the different parts of a product, such as the mobile phone screen and battery. Here the user gets i.a. learn about where in the world the metals come from and how many different metals are actually hidden in our products.

At the interactive station you also get to delve deeper into Norway and Norway's mines and metals.

Transport

The second step in a product journey is the Transport section. Here, the user gets to follow the metals journey, from being extracted from mines around the world, to being sent to smelters where they are melted down and processed and then sent on to create products. Finally, the visitor gets to see how the newly produced products are sent out to the whole world. The various import and export routes are illustrated with colorful animations.

Recycling

In the last part of the product journey, a user learns about which metals can and cannot be recycled and how the recycled metals become part of a circular lifecycle. To show this in a playful way, Spree created a mini-game where the user gets to try to recycle the correct metals.

At the end of a product journey, the user is tested in a Quiz, with questions regarding the information that the visitor has come by through each product flow.

Video

Animations

Animations are being used in many different ways and places in the application, both to give a user the information they need to know how to navigate further in the flow, but also to make the application feel more playful and lively.

Examples of small but powerful animations we have used, are metals in different colors that grow and shrink to show its amount around the world and ships, planes and trucks that move across the map to show the different import / export routes that the metals are sent. These animations are linked to the information a user is currently taking part of in the product journey.

The world map

The world map is made in 3D to create an exciting and visually appealing structure. The world map is created in the 3D-tool Blender.

The shapes of the map also show prominent and important mountain ranges where many mines and metals are found.

Multiple Users

The application is a multitouch solution where the GUI is designed so that three users can play through their own product journey at the same time. Even more users than that can at the same time interact with the world map to explore metals and mines.

A lot of ux-work was put into making sure that each station felt useful and user-friendly, regardless of whether it was one or more people who interacted with the application at the same time.

About the Norwegian Mining Museum and Geolab

“At the Norwegian Mining Museum, cultural and natural history meet. We manage the national cultural monument Kongsberg Sølvverk with buildings and collections, Norges Bank’s coin collection, Kongsbergs industrial history collection and Kongsbergs ski museum. In addition, the museum has national information related to mining history. Our collections, exhibitions and places related to the Sølvverket history, coin and medal production, ski history and new industrial history thematize Kongsberg’s history, which is also woven into major national and international stories.

The museum currently has two distribution arenas: the museum in Smeltehytta in Kongsberg center and Sølvgruvene and the activity area in Saggrenda.”

“In the exhibition Geolab, we focus on the modern dissemination of science and technology to young people. The unique thing about Geolab is that it is an inclusive space for young people where participation and learning are in focus. With us, you are invited to contribute to developing and explore completely new ideas. You always experience new things and are activated to have fun with others and through engaging learning programs you as a participant will feel that you have learned something. With us, everyone is welcome to explore, create and contribute. “