A visitor to an antique store discovers a box of letters. Reading the first one they realize they are not love letters but moving tributes of gratitude, from the families of soldiers held prisoner during World War Two, to an amateur radio operator who let them know their sons, daughters, and husbands were still alive.
This project was designed as an immersive tablet reading experience to tell the story of amateur radio during WWII and display the letters in a readable manner. The goals were to present the notes clearly and authentically and give the reader an immersive experience, as close to reading the messages in the time period as possible, given the translation from paper to digital media. Additonally, the letters were transcribed into text for discoverablility and accessibility.
Period recordings of the 1943 broadcasts are presented along with films documenting life during the war.
Disciplines: UI / UX | Identity | Website
What came out most in discussion around the letters is that we wanted to create an experience the user could absorb themselves in, along with making it useable. The challenges -
1. Letters from 1943 are not always in the best condition.
2. Cursive handwriting is difficult to read.
3. How to we make reading images on a screen immersive?
4. How do we set the context? Will presenting these letters offend anyone?
So our problem statement is “Create a letter reading experience that is comfortable and immersive.”
These issues were addressed by -
1. Using photo manipulation to improve the quality of the letter images after scanning.
2. Transcribe the letters into text, and present the images large enough to fill the screen.
3. Add sound broadcasts, music, and film.
4. Tell the full story. Don't place blame. Focus on peace.
Mapping how a user might reasonably visit the front page, become engaged through the broadcasts, and read some of the letters. One might also watch a film and seek additional resources after.
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