Exploring the halls and exhibits of the Natural History Museum can now be done from home thanks to a new initiative with Google. Rosanna Philpott reports
Queuing for museums is an old school activity. But now you can see most of it online from the comfort of your bed.. Google's arts and culture project was originally launched as a way to see fine art online, now they're branching into science... (SOUNDBITE) (English) ROSANNA PHILPOTT, REUTERS REPORTER, SAYING: "I'm in London's Natural History Museum, and even if you're half way across the world you can be too - using this - now your smart phone, tablet or any computer can bring go back 4.6 billion years into natural history" The project essentially forms an enormous data base from 60 different natural history museums from across the world. But it's also designed to be an immersive virtual experience... like a 360 museum style google street view. UPSOT using 360 film You can walk down museum halls and have a look at the exhibits. And videos have been fleshed out to bring extinct animals to life. UPSOT using 360 film (SOUNDBITE) (English) DIRECTOR OF GOOGLE'S CULTURAL INSTITUTE AND ART PROJECT, AMIT SOOD, SAYING: "You could be a kid sitting in Bombay you could be sitting wherever you like and you actually take a walk through the Hinsei Hall in the Natural History Museum, then pop to the Natural History Museum in Belgium seeing the largest dinosaur hall." Some may argue going online and fancy gadgets could never replace the real museum experience. If you were a real natural history super fan, you could considering doing both simultaneously.