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Fund Initiatives

Forgotten City: An Alternate Reality Game

We say "those who forget history are doomed to repeat it," but which elements of history are really essential to our everyday lives? What would happen if you woke up one morning to a San Francisco wiped of its history? Forgotten City is a mixed-reality game that invites Bay Area young professionals to explore the true value of history through a combination of online storytelling and real-world adventure. Targeted towards creative professionals who are technologically-savvy, Forgotten City will engage young adults in the collection of Bay Area stories that truly matter to their present and future as citizens of San Francisco. The purpose is to offer an online experience that connects young adults with history in a compelling way by creating an alternate reality game organized around contribution and exploration of stories of San Francisco (past, present, future). This innovative game will allow The Mint Project to test participatory museum concepts and connect with an audience that is ripe for museum involvement.

Cost to develop: $100,000 (includes creative and technology platform development)
Time to develop: six months
Active game length: two months
Game can be repeated or results can be archived.
Operating cost while game is active if repeated: $5,000 per month for web development and community management

Written in Stone: A Google Maps and iPhone Application

Walking through the contemporary built environment, it’s not easy to appreciate the dynamic history of the city. San Francisco’s geography has changed dramatically over the last 150 years, and skyscrapers hide secret past lives as swamps and industrial districts, boom towns and disaster zones. Written in Stone is an iPhone application that connects San Francisco residents to the hidden history in the landscape by delivering historic images of locations throughout the Bay. This research project will collect images from historical societies and archives and distribute them via a map-based application so that visitors can discover and connect with history as they move through the city. What was secret will be revealed, and residents and visitors alike will enjoy a magical trip into the history of the city’s architecture and built environment.

Cost to develop: $75,000 (includes photo research and technology development)
Time to develop: three months
Content will be distributed for free on both iPhone and via Google Maps.

San Francisco Makes History: A Digital Time Capsule

Bay Area innovators have pioneered many of the digital web-based technologies we use to express ourselves and connect with others. One of these tools, invented by a neighbor of The Old Mint, is Twitter, a short-messaging service that allows users to broadcast their daily actions—profound and mundane—to the world. San Francisco Makes History is a Twitter-based campaign to solicit and share one month of Bay Area residents’ messages about times when they have “made history” with their actions. The program would include live events, online visualizations, and a potential printed book to aggregate and display the unique stories of ways that people are making history every day. San Francisco Makes History connects all residents to the fact that history is not just something you read about but something you do. The Mint Project seeks to incorporate this philosophy and the stories of contemporary San Francisco residents into the museum, and San Francisco Makes History will help us begin connecting with visitors around this concept.

Cost to develop: $50,000 (includes marketing, visualization, custom programming, and curation of final content)
Time to develop: three months
Active contribution time: one month
Could be extended into ongoing program/campaign