Exhibition software which enables users to explore manuscript images either freely or within the context of an exhibition narrative.

Kiosque is the name given to the software development that arose from a Knowledge Transfer Partnership scheme (overseen by what used to be known as the Department of Trade and Industry) involving the University of Sheffield´s French Department and e-Learning specialists Tribal (Sheffield). A form of viewing software was developed to allow museum visitors to explore flexibly and interactively a set of surrogate manuscripts forming part of a public exhibition: this could either be narrative driven or free exploration depending on a visitor´s preference. Entitled `The Chronicles of Froissart : from conflict to co-operation´, this free exhibition opened to the public on Saturday 8 December 2007 for a six-month run at the Leeds Royal Armouries.kiosque

Kiosque is written using Java and can run as an applet or from a standalone desktop machine. The software provides a completely configurable presentation and interaction tool for generic use, using XML files to script and configure everything from the look-and-feel of the interface to the content that is delivered. During the Armouries exhibition, Kiosque was used to deliver narratives about the Chronicles of Froissart and the Hundred Years´ War (from the Online Froissart Project) for varying levels of interaction and information, depending on the preference of the user; the general public. Supporting the narratives, Kiosque interfaces with Virtual Vellum as a means of delivering high-resolution image content to support the complete multimedia experience. Like Virtual Vellum, Kiosque has the potential capability to access data collections directly from the federated SRB Data Grid.

Although Kiosque has been designed to deliver exhibition material, its design makes it ideally suited to be used as a presentational tool for users wishing to make use of the Virtual Vellum viewing environment, but adds the convenience of scripting actions (and thus preparing them). Choosing which images to display and how many to view simultaneously, along with a function that allows users to zoom and pan round the images are just two of the features that Kiosque provides.

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Duration: May 2006 – December 2007

Project Team

  • Prof. Peter Ainsworth (PI – University of Sheffield)
  • Bob Banks (Industrial Partner – Tribal Group, Sheffield)
  • Dr Michael Meredith (Developer – The Digital Humanities Institute)