This came the "dashboard" for the Indianapolis Museum of Art , an ongoing effort to measure various aspects of the Museum's performance. According to the web site, the goal is to seek to quantify and report out on areas of activity of general interest to museum studies specialists, colleagues, and patrons.
The Web section offers a sampling of numbers only data. What is interesting is how the web metrics include a mix of traditional web analytics and social media metrics, in this case number of friends on myspace (454) and views (see above) on its youtube channel. What it doesn't show me is any trends over time or analysis based on gathering data from several types of resources. I would like to see some context.
The dashboard is one feature in he Indianapolis Museum of Art's new Website which launched in September with lots of social media features. According to a blog post at the site, at least one staff person thinks the dashboard is cool:
For more than 5 years, I didn't think another dashboard could rival my Passat's for coolness. And while it may not be exactly the same thing, I think the IMA's new dashboard might just do it. So what's so cool about our dashboard? We're really the first museum in the world to use technology like this. The public now has access to statistics about attendance, the art collection and even our budget. For instance, folks can check to see how much we have spent so far this year and how it relates to what we projected in our 2007 budget. Visitors can also check to see how many people have visited Roman Art from the Louvre or shopped in the IMA Shop. For better or for worse, the IMA's dashboard let's you see the IMA from the inside.
Jim Spadaccini from Ideum Blog notes that dashboards are not new, in fact, there's a book about Dashboard Design. However, "This a great example of a museum presenting basic information about the institution in a dynamic and unconventional way."
UPDATE: The Giving Blog writes about the Dashboard here