By Madeleine Neal
From smart houses to smart cookware, everything is connected.
This is why Elizabeth Crooks, the communications coordinator of the Pentacrest Museums, said Connected: The Internet of Everyday Things is so important.
“[The event] is an exhibit that opened [Thursday] evening in the Old Capitol,” she said. “On its website … the new exhibit showcases ‘what it [means] to people and businesses to have these everyday devices connected to ourselves and also to each other.’ ”
Crooks said more and more pieces of people’s lives are connected through technology.
“I think people will be surprised at all the different types of things that are connected,” she said.
Crooks also noted this exhibit’s focus on the future.
“[It is] unique to have an exhibit that is not historically based,” she said. “[This exhibit] looks toward future.”
According to exhibit’s website, it will showcase the “benefits” and “challenges” of the “Internet of Things.”
Crooks said the exhibit will leave the audience to decide whether the connections are more of a benefit or challenge in people’s everyday lives.
The exhibit about the Internet is part of “Our Lives Online,” which is the University of Iowa’s 2017 “Theme Semester.”
For the past three spring semesters, the university has taken part in a “theme semester.” This year, the museum chose to create an exhibit on technology.
“[This exhibit] is a new direction for us,” said Director of Pentacrest Museums Trina Roberts. “[We were] stretched in a different direction.”
Linda Snetselaar, the UI associate provost for outreach and engagement, described the exhibit as something more “down to earth.”
“[The exhibit] is talking a lot about technology,” she said. “Additionally, what does it mean?”
The outreach and engagement website describes “Our Lives Online” as a theme to explore “the global system of connectedness, networks, and collaboration discovered in our past and emerging in our present future.”
Snetselaar said Pentacrest Museums have been “great partners” to the Office of Outreach and Engagement.
Erika Christiansen, the UI Office of Outreach and Engagement director of campus initiatives, agreed that the museums have been great partners.
“[The Old Capitol is] at the heart of campus,” she said. “[It is a great place] to get connected.”
The exhibit opened to the public Thursday evening and will run through May 21.