Games, games, games…

by editor Phillippa Pitts

Games have been on my mind a lot this week. I know a lot of people who spend their incredible brainpower building games for museums, like Kellian Adams Pletcher with Murder at the Met, or Susan Edward with the Getty’s Switch (which I admire for its incredible simplicity!). I’ve even built a few games myself with SCVNGR. Nevertheless, I tend to approach gamification from a skeptical starting point.

This week, two new games crossed my desk that couldn’t be more different from each other: History Hero and Papers, Please.

History Heros, Courtesy of

History Heros, Courtesy of

“Papers Please,” courtesy of Slate

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Learning from 100-year-old Museum Education

Check out this amazing story from the Sunderland Museum. In 1913, their curator came up with a program for blind visitors–adults and children–to let them explore objects. Architectural columns, historical gas masks, and scores of natural history specimens were included.

courtesy of Atlas Obscura

courtesy of Atlas Obscura

Make sure you scroll to the end of the article to see the clay models that the visitors made after their visit. Really incredible!

How is this different from what we do today?

Summer Reading, Anyone?

With summer classes at Tufts kicking off this week, we thought we’d offer a few suggestions for those of us who aren’t in class to keep up the good work. (Of course, our reading is all beach-worthy!)

This week’s recommendation is from Program Director, Cynthia Robinson:

Mary Kay Zuravleff’s fictitious but totally believable National Museum of Asian Art takes center stage in her funny and offbeat book, The Bowl Is Already Broken (2006). Zuravleff, who worked as an editor at the Smithsonian, used her insider’s knowledge to construct wickedly accurate depictions of the quirky but devoted people who work in museums and confront-or cause-many of the big and small issues that we discuss in “Museums Today.”

Looking for more books? Check out the “Read More” tab. We’re storing all the suggestions (summery and otherwise) right there.

Have a book you’d like to recommend? Email Phillippa at tuftsmuseumblog[at]