MV Blog


Taking nature to the nation

by Nicole K
Publish date
1 May 2014
Comments (2)

In 2011 Museum Victoria produced our first Field Guide app: the MV Field Guide to Victorian Fauna.

The app has since been downloaded by over 85,000 people and gets great reviews. But there has been a repeated request – a request from people who don't live in Victoria.

Where are the apps for the other Australian states and territories?

This wasn't something we could address on our own. To make apps for the other states and territories, we needed the shared expertise of natural history museums around the country.

In 2012, Museum Victoria was successful in applying for an Inspiring Australia Unlocking Australia's Potential Grant to produce seven new Field Guide apps in collaboration with:

  • Australian Museum
  • Museum and Art Gallery of the Northern Territory
  • Queensland Museum
  • South Australian Museum
  • Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery
  • Western Australian Museum

For the past two years, scientists around Australia have been writing species descriptions, sourcing images and we have been tweaking the code. We have also worked with colleagues from the Atlas of Living Australia to source taxonomic names, conservation status and recorded observations of each species.

We are very excited to announce that the products of this nation-wide collaborative project are now available.

Field Guide to ACT Fauna app (iPhone & iPad) Field Guide to ACT Fauna app (iPhone & iPad)
Source: Museum Victoria

There are now eight apps – Field Guides to the Fauna of New South Wales, Northern Territory, Queensland, South Australia, Tasmania, Western Australia and the ACT – as well as a new version of the original Field Guide to Victorian Fauna.

Collectively the apps contain 2105 species, 7281 images and 270 audio files.

They are available for both Apple and Android devices. And are all absolutely FREE.

We hope you enjoy them!

Links to the App Store and Google Play can be found via our National Field Guide Apps webpage.

Field Guide to Victorian Fauna (Android) Field Guide to Victorian Fauna (Android)
Source: Museum Victoria

Steve Jobs 1955 – 2011

by Simon Sherrin
Publish date
7 October 2011
Comments (0)

This post is by Simon Sherrin, the programmer behind MV's field guide app. He blogs at the Field Guide to the Field Guide.

Like so many, I was saddened yesterday to hear of the death of Steve Jobs. Due to the generosity of a number of donors, we are fortunate to have over 240 examples of hardware, software and trade literature relating to the history of the Apple Computer Company in our Information and Communication Collection.

Apple II computer and carry case Apple II computer system, circa 1978. The Apple II was the first commercially successful mass market personal computer to be designed and sold as a household or small business item (HT 13336).
Source: Museum Victoria

From a beige Apple II to a Bondi Blue iMac, from a 2001 iPod to a first generation iPhone, the company that the two Steves started in a garage in Silicon Valley has made a huge impact on computing.

Apple iPhone with headphones The 8 GB Apple iPhone from 2007, the most recent acquisition into MV's Apple collection. (HT 25320).
Source: Museum Victoria

It was the experience of playing with the iPad that led to the development of Museum Victoria's Field Guide to Victorian Fauna. There will always be debate around whether the 1977 Apple I was the first "personal computer", but with the iPhone and iPad, Jobs and his team have made computers that, to me, truly feel personal.

R.I.P Steve, you'll be missed.


Collections Online: Apple I replica

Original Apple I, Powerhouse Museum collection

Smithsonian Institution interview with Steve Jobs, 1995

ABC Lateline interview with Mike Daisey

About this blog

Updates on what's happening at Melbourne Museum, the Immigration Museum, Scienceworks, the Royal Exhibition Building, and beyond.