Interactive Technology to Enhance Museum Experience

PassPort to Discovery ™ launches September 1st

Aug 31, 2010, 13:45 ET from Northwest Museum of Arts & Culture

SPOKANE, Wash., Aug. 31 /PRNewswire/ -- The Northwest Museum of Arts & Culture (MAC), a Smithsonian Affiliate, and Charles J. Simon, founder of pioneering technology companies and nationally recognized software developer, announced today the innovative pilot project PassPort to Discovery™.  It is an interactive exhibit system designed to customize the visitor experience at museums and exhibit venues.  Onscreen talking avatars greet visitors by name and can paraphrase the exhibit content.  A unique gaming element allows visitors to answer questions and earn points - high scores are displayed.

"This unique technology was created to allow museum visitors to enjoy their exploration more by creating a totally customized and unique experience," said Charles Simon, developer of PassPort to Discovery™.  "This is the only exhibit technology allowing visitors to capture their experience on their own ID card and have it remember their individual preferences every time they visit."

PassPort to Discovery™ opens September 1 at the MAC in combination with a new exhibit 100 Curious Things.  This exhibit marks the start of a major effort to increase public digital access to MAC Collection materials.  

This prototype includes touch screen computers associated with various pieces in the Spokane Timeline exhibit and unique visitor passes that can be sensed by the computers.  Each of the exhibit's four interactive kiosks offers in-depth information on an aspect of Spokane history.  The touch screens can target visitors' specific interests, grade level and language.

"This PassPort system enhances the learning process through a uniquely engaging experience using audio, video, animations, questions, and competition," said Ron Rector, MAC Executive Director.

The MAC is the Inland Northwest's art, history and American Indian center and now is home to a one-of-a-kind system designed to provide youth and adults with a unique blend of education and entertainment.  The MAC is proud to be a beta test site for other museums across the country to explore the potential for this exhibit system.  To learn more, visit

About Charles Simon

Originally from San Francisco, CA, Simon has co-founded three pioneering technology companies; (acquired by, Bentley's Continuum and a CAD for printed-circuit company.  Simon managed major development projects for and 2Wire, Inc.  He has gained national attention in write-ups including Newsweek, The Los Angeles Times, and PC Magazine.

Contact: Marsha Rooney, Senior Curator of History


SOURCE Northwest Museum of Arts & Culture