Today we are opening registration for our first official museum-hosted Experimonth and I am super excited about it.
Experimonth was the culmination of many ideas and personal experiments by museum staff members and their families and friends. The seeds of what became Experimonth were planted in July of 2008 when two brave museum animal keepers experimented with a weeklong Diet of Corn. That idea then became the catalyst for another diet-related experiment in December of 2008, the Raw Diet (initially the Beet Diet). Discussions in Durham bars (the Pinhook and Broad St. Cafe) and over email raised awareness and excitement for the Raw Diet, and due to the timing (New Years), turned into Experimonth, an entire year of month-long blogging experiments, mostly centered around New Years Resolutions.
A year and some months later, the idea to turn this personal project into a mission-driven (a.k.a. science as a way of knowing) web community was spawned and work began to figure out a model that would pair local researchers with our community in meaningful ways.
Experimonth: Mood is the first attempt at this pairing. Dr. Frances Ulman and a team of museum staff have co-created the experimonth — from the daily challenge (record mood via SMS), the weekly mission (complete a special assignment), the visualizations of participant data, the blog posts, and details of the in-person wrap up even in early May.
I invite you to participate (registration closes at 200 participants) and welcome your responses and suggestions. I’ll surely be blogging about the experience both here on useum and on the experimonth site proper.