Leading Museums, Museum Leaders

Bringing bones to life

The Smithsonian’s new iOS app called Skin & Bones that brings fossils to life using 3D animation and augmented reality.

Andrew Liszewski, The Smithsonian’s New App Brings Museum Skeletons And Fossils To Life, Gizmodo, 14 January 2015

Like it or not, museums can be boring places for kids to explore. Outside of a T-rex, fossils and skeletons are only interesting once you’ve got a few years of school under your belt. But don’t worry, kids (and the Smithsonian has got your back during field trips with a new iOS app called Skin & Bones that brings fossils to life using 3D animation and augmented reality.

The Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History’s Bone Hall is one of the institution’s most popular exhibits, housing close to 300 skeletons and fossilised specimens. And using the new Skin & Bones app, 13 skeletons in the collection can now be brought to life by simply pointing the iPad or iPhone’s camera at the exhibit. A 3D version of the animal will come to life, accompanied by educational animations and factoids.

The app also includes detailed maps of the National Museum of Natural History, and in addition to being completely free to download, the Smithsonian even provides complimentary Wi-Fi in the Bone Hall so visitors don’t have to use up their limited monthly data to install and use it.

Council of Australasian Museum Directors, c/o Ms Daryl Karp, Museum of Australian Democracy at Old Parliament House PO Box 3934 Manuka, Australian Capital Territory 2603 Australia, © CAMD 2020
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