DigiMuse, Conference
DigiMuse, Conference

Digital Conversations: Open Call 2018

23 Aug 2018
The Salon,
Level 1
10am - 5pm
Free Admission
Digital Conversations: Open Call 2018 is the latest edition of the National Museum's DigiMuse series of talks. Based on the projects to be showcased at DigiMuse Presents, local and international speakers will share their journey and experiences in developing their projects with museums and cultural institutions.





Welcome Remarks
by Jervais Choo, Programme Director, DigiMuse


Jervais Choo
Programme Director, DigiMuse 

Jervais Choo is Deputy Director at the National Museum of Singapore, a social history museum with a rich 130 year history that prides itself in being the oldest museum in Singapore, but with the youngest soul. He leads the digital transformation efforts for the museum and has a keen interest in bringing together new methods of bridging experience and understanding through contextual layering and interventions.

In the area of digital innovation, Jervais has overseen the development of projects as Gallery 10, a gallery in the museum dedicated to digital works and creation; as well as Story of the Forest, a 15 metre high immersive digital artwork commission inspired by the museums key collection, The William Farquhar Collection of Natural History Drawings. The museum also introduced an AR/VR enabled architectural tour built on the Google Tango platform in 2017, and is currently embarking on a digital and cultural innovation programme that aims to bring artistic and industry partners together for creative experimentation to build a vibrant cultural sector invested in digital innovation.


Digitally Challenged, or Challenging Digital? Insights from Digital Culture, Innovation and Activism
by Daniel Kaplan, Co-founder, Plurality University in conversation with Angelita Teo, Director, National Museum of Singapore

Museums have gone digital for some time now – but to what point is it really changing the way they see their role, their relationship with visitors (and non-visitors), their connection to other actors, and finally, their place in culture, science or history in the making? Taking clues from other areas, Daniel Kaplan looks at digital technologies – but also digital cultures, practices, players and business models – as agents of change. He will also look at how “digital” is being challenged as a source or symbol of our unsustainable societies, and suggest directions into which museum professionals could look at for a responsible, socially-fecund use of digital technologies and concepts.

Daniel Kaplan
Co-founder, Plurality University

Daniel Kaplan is a futurist and entrepreneur, with one leg in innovation and another in fiction. He currently leads the “Plurality University” project, a global network of people who mobilise the resources of the imaginary to broaden the scope of thinkable futures. In 1986, he created one of the world's first digital communication agencies, JKLM. In the 1990s, he contributed to the Internet’s development and evolution. He also created the Next-Generation Internet Foundation (FING), a non-profit Think-&-Do-Tank to “anticipate digital transformations”.


How Can Museums Overcome Material Constraints With All The Technology We Have at our Disposal?
by Donald Lim, Managing Director, Digimagic & Andrea Nanetti, Associate Professor and Associate Chair (Research) of the Nanyang Technological University (NTU), School of Art, Design and Media in conversation with Daniel Tham, Curator, National Museum of Singapore.


Being more immersive, interactive and intelligent, new digital technologies will redefine the museum experience, bring exhibits to life and make learning more fun and relevant to individuals. New intelligent research tools will also improve access to information, automatically aggregating and formatting data according to personal interests, thus enabling museums to address existing material constraints.

Donald Lim
Managing Director, Digimagic

An experimenter and trans-disciplinary collaborator at Digimagic, Donald Lim has over 25 years of experience in building strategies and innovative solutions for various temporary and permanent communication installations. Donald firmly believes that a natural immersive experience is the key to effective communication as emotionally-changed ideas change behaviours. He is highly skilled at establishing immersive experiences to brand communication initiatives.

Andrea Nanetti
Associate Professor and Associate Chair (Research) of the Nanyang Technological University (NTU), School of Art, Design and Media


Dr Andrea Nanetti received his education in Historical Sciences in Italy, France, Germany, Greece and USA, focusing on Medieval and Renaissance Studies. He has pioneered numerous digital humanities projects, and has published 20 multilingual books, two edited journals, and over 70 essays in scientific journals and books. At NTU, he serves as Associate Professor and Associate Chair (Research) of the School of Art, Design and Media; Senior Research Team Member of the Complexity Institute; and Faculty Member of the University Scholarly Programme.


Hey William! Giving Art a Voice
by Nush Khan, Key Account Manager, Unified Inbox in conversation with Kevin Lim, Deputy Director, National Gallery Singapore and Co:Lab X

The idea for the Ask William AI Museum Guide came from asking a single question – what if we gave art a voice? After adding the UnificationEngine®-powered SmartContact to their smartphone contacts, museum visitors can send “William” photos of art they like via instant messaging on WhatsApp, LINE or Facebook Messenger. William will then respond with the full story of each artwork, including text, photos, videos and links for the visitor to find out more – even when the museum is closed.

Nush Khan
Key Account Manager, Unified Inbox

Nush Khan is the Key Account Manager for Unified Inbox Pte. Ltd. (UIB) and is responsible for UIB’s Asia Pacific-region sales, account management, and business development. She is based in Singapore.
Nush works across industry verticals to bring the best smart home, smart enterprise, and smart city solutions to UIB’s customers in Asia. She earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Applied Accounting from Oxford BrookesUniversity and is a Certified Chartered Accountant.
A frequent moderator and panelist, Nush presents across Southeast Asia. She shows enterprises and governments how they can leverage new IoT and AI technologies to meet their customers’ and citizens’ needs while simultaneously reducing resources and delighting users.


HoloLens – Tomorrow’s Reality: Collaborative Programmes/Prototypes for Visitors and Museum Professionals

by Kee Cheng Heng, Sales Lead and Co-founder, HelloHolo  in conversation with Anthony Lau, Conservator (Paintings), Heritage Conservation Centre

The conservation of historical works and art is an intricate skill that requires sharp intuition and keen observation. Through the use of Microsoft HoloLens, visitors can wield Mixed Reality to combine virtual visualizations during the investigation of the physical object. The Project Insight system can be used to train new conservators, as well as engage museum guests in the intricacies of art conservation. Come and try out the future of technology – the future is now.

Kee Cheng Heng
Sales Lead and Co-founder, HelloHolo

Kee Cheng Heng previously worked with Microsoft Singapore’s Developer Experience and Evangelism team as a Technical Evangelist. He has since used his wealth of knowledge and experience with Microsoft’s development platforms and tools to empower the community to achieve more. He now leads the HelloHolo team to inspire other enterprises and consumers by providing consultancy and guidance on ideating the next frontier of applications.


Networking Break



An Excavation Through Time: A Post-mortem
by Daniel Soo, Content lead, iMMERSiVELY  in conversation with Lim Chen Sian, Associate Fellow, Archaeology Unit, Nalanda-Sriwijaya Centre at ISEAS - Yusof Ishak Institute.


An Excavation Through Time is a VR experience that lets visitors team up to dig for buried artefacts from Singapore’s Temasek period – to learn about archaeology, stratigraphy and Singapore’s past in an interactive and social manner. How successful were these goals? How can we achieve them better? Daniel Soo hopes to find out through a post-mortem evaluation of the experience.

Daniel Soo
Content lead, iMMERSiVELY

Daniel Soo is the creative and project lead for An Excavation Through Time. As the content lead of iMMERSiVELY, Daniel conceptualises, writes and produces for VR & AR content solutions across various industries. He believes that VR is at its best when it is fun, social, and when it meaningfully incorporates the body. As a writer, Daniel is interested in how immersive technology can push storytelling. His first VR short film was exhibited earlier this year at MeshMinds 1.0, Singapore’s first Art x Technology festival.


Beyond Our Harbour of History
by Nick Tan, Founder, 360VR Asia in conversation with Nicholas Chen, Strategic Communications and Digital Manager, National Heritage Board

360VR Asia believes that the museum of tomorrow is one that combines traditional exhibits alongside digital technology such as gigapixel photography, immersive technology and other forms of interactive media, to create an experiential visitor journey that is immersive, interactive and engaging. With this in mind, Nick Tan will share how A Harbour of History was built in a modular and scalable fashion, with the understanding that any successful activation will require a multitouch-point integration, both online and offline.

Nick Tan
Founder, 360VR Asia

Nick Tan is the founder of AP Media Pte Ltd, a firm that specialises in business marketing, creative content and marketing consultancy in the region. He founded the sub-brands Anonymous Productions which crafts creative video content, as well as 360VR Asia, a leading 360 and VR/AR production house in the region. Nick is an award-winning content producer, and his team was one of the first to enter the realm of 360VR, AR and video content online integration for clients.


Finding Truth in the Age of Cynicism
by Wally Tham,
Director, Big Red Button (video)

With a public that is increasingly cynical about news, how do we create an experience that allows people to find handles on what the truth could be? Multiplicity is a unique way of broadening the number of informational user experiences in the museum, and allowing visitors to discover new perspectives that they might not have previously considered.

Wally Tham
Director, Big Red Button

Wally Tham leads Big Red Button, a change management company in Singapore that uses stories to help non-profit organisations, corporations and government agencies to tackle issues differently. He also leads a ground-up initiative called Stand Up For Our Singapore, which finds ways to contribute to Singapore’s narrative on what kind of country we could be and to help one another. In his spare time, Wally likes to look at global problems and find ways to alleviate inequality and environmental issues.


Tea Break



Curio: Unlocking Stories Behind Objects
by James McLean,
Producer/Content Developer, Story Inc

Learn how to unlock stories behind objects with Curio, a platform that allows museums, galleries and archives to create their own interactive object labels. You don’t need any technical skills to make an interactive, and you can update or change it from your desktop as often as you like. Museum staff can now create stories and share them with visitors, without needing an external company or an in-house digital team. Curio is a product from the innovation hub within the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa.

James McLean
Producer/Content Developer, Story Inc

In his 15 years as Story Inc’s head of content, James McLean has created a vast range of storylines for visitors. These include interpreting ancient Thai history to today's Bangkok teenagers; telling the story of New Zealand's hydro lakes; creating a ghost story in a Singapore theme park, and presenting the making of Lord of the Rings to the world in the form of a travelling exhibition. James graduated from Victoria University with first-class honours in English Literature.


From Playground Kids to Playground Masters
by Julie Miyuki Colby, Co-Founder and CEO, It Takes An Island

What happens when you get a bunch of teenagers in a room to tackle real issues? Throw in a group of professionals and industry experts and you have the Playground Masters Hackathon. Inspired and maybe a little bit crazy, the National Museum of Singapore and It Takes An Island decided to provide a platform any adult would be envious of to a diverse group of kids to see what they could come up with for future playgrounds. Join Julie Miyuki Colby as she shares more about the hackathon – it is ultimately the process, the learning, and the friendships that matter, but the results were pretty awesome as well.  

Julie Miyuki Colby
Co-Founder and CEO, It Takes An Island


Julie is the co-founder and CEO of It Takes An Island, a community platform that brings real-world context to children's education. Julie is a serial entrepreneur, educator, and a mother of three energetic kids. Her experience and background has brought her to invest her time in the nurturing and development of the future generation with a focus on inquisitive mindsets, broad industry exposure and social diversity. She believes this will be achieved when corporations and society as a whole actively engage in the upbringing and education of children.

4.30pm - 5pm

Closing Remarks
by Jervais Choo, Programme Director, DigiMuse



DigiMuse Conference

The programme is accompanied by DigiMuse Presents, which unveils the awarded projects from the inaugural DigiMuse Open Call that bring to life the possibilities of blending history, art and technology.

About DigiMuse

The DigiMuse programme is an initiative by the National Museum of Singapore that seeks to build a vibrant cultural sector, as well as engage with the wider technology industry to encourage creative experimentation in cultural spaces. The programme invites artists, technologists and culture professionals to co-create projects, and provide considered interventions that showcase the possibilities of integrating culture and technology.

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Family Time

Visit our permanent galleries with your little ones and play spot-the-artefact! Our colourful Early Learning Resources introduce pre-schoolers to our artefacts according to the themes of Numbers, Colours, and ABCs. Available at $8 per set from the Museum Label shop. For more children's activity booklets, click here.

Museum guide

Download our museum guide (English, Chinese, Bahasa Melayu, Tamil) to find out about the many treasures in our various galleries. In this guide, you will also find the floor plan for easier navigation. Enjoy your visit!

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