Tuesday, April 13, 2010

When provenance becomes to cheap to meter

Jim Giles reports for New Scientist on “Barcodes help objects tell their stories”:
The Tales of Things website, which goes live this week, aims to take this idea into a new realm. It allows users to create an entry on the site for any object they like. A basic entry features an image and associated text, but audio, video and other content can also be added. The site then generates a unique two-dimensional barcode, known as a QR code, for the user to print off and attach to the object.


Linking objects with people's memories of those items could be one of the most interesting uses for the site, says Andrew Hudson-Smith of University College London, one of the five UK academic institutions behind the project. Museum curators have also expressed an interest in tagging their collections, he says.
(via Bruce Sterling: Beyond the Beyond)


Cultural Property Observer said...

I once raised using electronic tags to track provenance with a museum person. They pooh-poohed the idea saying it might damage the artifact. Anyway, who knows. It might have more legs now.



Anonymous said...

I think the Microsoft HCCB 'Tag' would be much better at tracking provenance. The TaleofThings forces you to use their own website for the information about the thing, whereas the Microsoft Tag will point to any website you choose. Therefore a Museum or a collector or dealer could point their tag to their own websites. See: http://www.microsoft.com/tag/
Still both technologies are very promising for coins. I would love to see one of these in a 2x2 flip or envelope.