Alice in Typhoidland Interactive Museum Virtual Tour

Alice in Typhoidland Interactive Museum Virtual Tour

Alice in Typhoidland Virtual Museum Tour

An award-winning exhibition that garnered critical acclaim for its engaging, multi-disciplinary approach, Alice in Typhoidland explores typhoid’s past and present. Curated by Dr Claas Kirchhelle and Dr Samantha Vanderslott of the University of Oxford, the exhibit features a diverse array of media formats, ranging from still images and videos to interactive games and posters.

In the words of the exhibition’s curators,

“A killer of paupers, princes, and presidents, typhoid was an invisible threat in Victorian England and remains dangerous in many areas today. Join Alice Liddell (Alice in Wonderland) on a murky tour of Oxford’s underside. Learn how doctors and engineers controlled typhoid to stop the disease from spreading in Alice’s city, and see how sanitation, vaccination, and typhoid have evolved since.”

Providing an alternative means of displaying important work

Initially housed within the Weston Museum and The History of Science Museum in Oxford, the exhibition was open for just two months before the Covid-19 pandemic forced it to close its doors. As interest in immunology spiked and the Alice in Typhoidland exhibit became increasingly relevant to the public’s everyday experience, its curators looked for ways to share essential information and the museum experience with a wider audience, despite lockdown restrictions.

One way of doing so was to offer virtual tours of the exhibition. Dr Vanderslott contacted the 360 Virtual Tours team, and we moved quickly to visit the site and capture images of each display before they were dismantled.

An exercise in world-class editing

Over subsequent months, we worked closely with Dr Vanderslott and Dr Kirchhelle to populate the 360 scenes with a spectacularly wide range of content, creating an accurate digital representation of the exhibit. This necessitated a considerable amount of editing.

Content had to be added to blank screens around the exhibit and various small but significant steps, such as removing reflections from glass surfaces, required a keen eye for detail. We aimed to ensure that the Weston Museum virtual tour retained those features that contributed to its success while also adapting it for easy and intuitive navigation via digital devices. This was achieved thanks to careful planning, a thorough approach and the experience and expertise we’ve accumulated over a decade of designing virtual tours.

Breaking down barriers to access with immersive virtual technology

With the Alice in Typhoidland virtual museum tour online, people worldwide could engage with various multimedia resources and learn about the role vaccines play in helping eradicate typhoid. Our work allowed the scientists behind the exhibition to continue displaying their important research throughout the pandemic, extending its lifecycle and creating a permanent record of the exhibits for future generations.

It also allowed the curators to break down traditional barriers to access. With the Alice in Typhoidland virtual museum tour, geographic location was no longer a limiting factor – virtual visitors from around the world could access the exhibits and learn from them remotely. This complemented the organiser’s plans to take the exhibition global and visit regions in India, Nepal and Bangladesh.

We were very impressed at how 360 Virtual Tours were able to bring our exhibition and laboratories to life. The process was very smooth and all done remotely from taking the photos, to designing the layout and style, and to incorporating our edits. 360 Virtual Tours comes with our highest recommendation. The result is a polished, dynamic, and immersive experience!

Dr Vanderslott
University of Oxford