Digital Wanderlust: Staying Safe and Sustainable Online

I invite you to close your eyes and travel back in your mind to the last time you remember wandering. Where did you wander? How did you feel?

Some of my favorite places to wander are museums and library exhibits. I find a deep sense of calm joy looking through archives and pages for information. When looking through a library, I can see the physical shelves that hold archives of information. I know the information has been librarian-approved. I can see the walls, and I know that even though there is a lot of information to be found, I have to stop when I hit a wall.

Now imagine the same information and how ­­it’s presented online. Information overload occurs when people are exposed to too much information to process at any given moment. An abundance of available information online can make a quick quest to the internet feel more like climbing Mount Everest.

Online environments and social media apps cater to what is known as the attention economy. In this view, human attention is a valuable resource and scarce commodity. We pay for information and advertisements with our time and attention. Many digital environments are designed with hooks that cater to those of us humans who are prone to wanderlust. Intimidating places are still great to explore, but better to prepare the experience more enjoyable.

Where do the potential dangers lie in your technology interactions?

The same potential for the wanderlust of information exists online, but navigation requires a different set of tools. Digital Wellness is a lifestyle that integrates body, mind, and spirit to promote optimal health and well-being within the human, natural, and digital communities.

When traveling in digital spaces, we can use digital wellness to develop our knowledge and skills to experience a sense of digital wanderlust. Digital Wanderlust refers to the desire to safely and sustainably explore online environments.

How can you prepare yourself and your community to flourish while using technology, despite these dangers?

By simply recognizing that there will be dangers and learning how to prepare and react, we can move our lives from a feeling of digital overwhelm to a sense of digital wanderlust.

Working with Anthropologists

You might be thinking:

why should I work with an anthropologist when I know so little about them?

Let’s change that.

Hi, I am Nicole. I am an anthropologist and I want to apply what I’ve learned about studying people to help you reach your goals.

My goal with anthropology is to make strange things more familiar, and the familiar seem more strange.

Anthropology is a broad field of study, and you will likely find many parts of your life that could look different through an anthropological lens.

The History of Museum Technologies and Digital Participation

In their article, Four steps in the history of museum technologies and visitors’ digital participation, Christensen traces the history of curation toward digital participation. They assert that exhibited objects are in dialogue with their surrounding paratexts. In this discussion, Christensen draws from examples of the Bode Museum, the Victoria and Albert Museum, and Dr. Johnson’s House to present four museum technology history steps.

The four steps refer to print reproductions, photography, audio guides, and independent museum paratexts via digital and participatory forms. Christensen concludes that museum objects’ significance has shifted from being about their historical context to how they interact with modern times. 

This is important for both the archaeologists who first uncover materials and the museums that display them. When collecting data, archaeologists may choose to employ more interpretive methods.

Providing a detailed archive of the data collection process allows institutions to reassess interpretations in the future when visitor tastes change. I think another key point from this study is that visitors care more about experiences than learning. This means modern institutions will need to balance recreation and information and learn how to market both to their visitors.

HSU Unconference: How I Learned Shareout Building a Better Search by Going into Categories and Searching by Subject

From the Humboldt State University Library: “Nikki Martensen explains how to build a better search by going in to Categories and then searching by subject. By searching by subject, you’ll be exposed to related words that will enrich your search.”

Interpretive Poster Activity for Archaeology Courses

I created this assignment for an introduction to archaeology course while I was a teaching assistant at Humboldt State University.


You have been the lead archaeological researcher at a site for years, but a recent decrease in tourism has severely threatened your funding. In an effort to promote new visitors and attract funding, the site management team has decided to produce an advertisement campaign. You are each responsible for creating a travel poster with information to entice the public.

Examples of historic travel and tourism posters can be found though the Library of Congress digital archives.


-Choose any site related to this week’s lectures on the development of complexity on North America.

-Using PowerPoint or a similar program, create a single slide poster with 8 ½ X 11 dimensions.

-On a separate slide, provide your sources for images and information (this includes your textbook!)

-Then either upload to the class website, or print out and bring to a physical class session for discussion!

*Your Poster must include the following to receive credit:

-Name of Site

-Image of site (pick your poison: maps, photographs, artist renditions)

-At least 5 “facts” about your site (What will the public find most interesting about the site?)