#MCN50 Voices: Greg Albers & Susan Wigodner


This year MCN celebrates its 50th anniversary. Just as MCN has established a network of established and emerging professionals, #MCN50 Voices brings members together, old and new, near and far.


After chatting for half an hour, Susan Wigodner, Web & Digital Project Manager at The Field Museum, and Greg Albers, Digital Publications Manager at the J. Paul Getty Trust, felt like they hadn’t arrived a “formal” interview. Instead, here they offer their list of their favorite museum digital projects, tools, books, and more… (GIFs!)


Greg Susan
Title Digital Publications Manager, J. Paul Getty Trust Web & Digital Project Manager, The Field Museum
Project You’ve Worked On I came to the Getty at the tail end of our Virtual Library project, but it’s exactly the kind of thing I love about museums. Thinking big about serving the public. Free downloads of 300+ books? Not something most publishers can or would do. Audio tours for the 9/11 Memorial Museum. They include some pretty amazing personal stories, and I had a chance to meet many of those people (and a prep call with narrator Robert De Niro).
Open-Source Museum Project +1 to ACMI’s audio guide! →

We were excited to see that one particularly because they used Jekyll, a static site generator, and we’re using static site generators to publish online, multi-format books.

ACMI’s audio guide (Australian Centre for the Moving Image)
Museum Microsite The Art Institute of Chicago’s Linked Visions comes to mind. A nice use of D3.js, and they took advantage of open source by building off another project. Smart! It’s a little older now, but MoMA’s microsite for their 2015 Jacob Lawrence exhibition is one of my favorites.
Book You Keep at Your Office RESTful Web APIs and Publishing as Artistic Practice Content Everywhere, by Sara Wachter-Boettcher. I saw her speak a few months ago and am appreciating the perspective as we start a website redesign.
(Digital) Style Guide I’ve been looking at the web accessibility guides from 18F and Carnegie Museums of Pittsburgh a lot this past year. Thankful for both. I second Greg ! And of course MailChimp’s if you haven’t checked that out already.  
Web Platform/App GitHub. (So intertwined in my work it took me a minute to realize it was a web platform/app I could cite for this!) Zapier – which lets me connect all my other favorite web platforms together! Also: Airtable.

My amazing colleague @amelialikespie, keeping me humble, Slacked this to me. If you have Slack and Giphy integration, you can make your own by typing: /giphy #echo WHATEVER WORDS YOU WANT

If I used only one social media site Twitter Instagram
Podcast On vacation road trips this summer, we’ve been listening to Brains On! with the kids. Our favorite episode? “Fart Smarts: Understanding the gas we pass”. Naturally. Startup often feels oddly relevant to my work in a 125-year-old museum.
Museum project I’m jealous of The New Museum’s NEW INC startup incubator. Crowdsourced visual descriptions for museum websites, like AMNH’s Project Describe. Also the Met’s born-digital map that’s being used across channels.
My best non-museum job Pottery Barn – a company that was intentional about management practices and staff development. And yes, the discount. The Container Store – great discount and working with fellow organization nerds! They also have a formalized and really ingrained company culture.
Top technical skill or tip Everyone knows about the inspector tool in browsers right? I didn’t soon enough and it was a revelation → Ctrl-click (mac) or right-click (pc) on anything in your browser window, and select “Inspect element” I recently learned how to take a full-page screenshot via the “inspect” function in Chrome and I’m really excited about it.
Pic of my phone homescreen

Default background, so sad. Also, not technically my homescreen, but the one I look at most.

Weird background is a photo taken at the Renwick Gallery’s Wonder exhibition

Weirdest thing you’ve done for a museum job Ha! I can’t compete → Dressed up in an inflatable T. rex costume for a birthday video for SUE
Favorite MCN moment That time I was shamed by a circle of six awesome #musetech nerds who simultaneously pulled out portable chargers from pockets and bags after I suggested I had to run to the room to recharge. Also, karaoke. All of the karaoke. Always. Convincing my boss, @badunn, to come to MCN 2015 in Minneapolis, and having him say “We have to bring the whole team to this next year!”