Inside the Collection

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Hot off the press

June 24, 2009

Debbie Rudder
Photo courtesy of The Bank of England Three early Boulton and Watt rotative steam engines still exist, and all are held by museums: Boulton's own Lap engine in the London Science Museum, the Barclay Perkins engine in the National Museum of Scotland, and our very own Whitbread engine.

Meet the curator- Michael Lea

June 17, 2009

Michael Lee
Name Michael Lea What is your speciality area? Music and musical instruments. It’s a very diverse area so covers a lot of ground from historical to contemporary aspects through to musical traditions from a variety of cultures.

Maccaferri plastic guitar

June 17, 2009

Michael Lee
As I mentioned this is another of my favourite things in the collection. It was bought by the museum from Maccaferri’s plastics company in the USA in the 1950s as an example of what you could do with plastic, and it doesn’t sound too bad as an instrument either.

The Traeger Pedal

June 10, 2009

Erika Taylor
Imagine, you're at the weekly pub trivia quiz, it's the final round and you need 2 points to win. Question 1. Which Australian Icon appears on the back of the Australian $20 note? a tough one! but some may know that it's the Reverend John Flynn, who started the world's first air ambulance service, The Royal Flying Doctors.

Meet the curator- Debbie Rudder

June 3, 2009

Debbie Rudder

My main research interests are: how our past use of energy informs present and future energy use; and the history and practice of innovation.

Matthew Boulton and the Imperial Bank Mint in St Petersburg

June 3, 2009

Debbie Rudder
At first glance, this drawing shows an old building holding a steam engine and other machinery. Then the eye focuses on the figures, men in formal eighteenth century Russian dress; perhaps they are there to provide scale, or to suggest that this is an important building holding important machinery.

Meet the curator- Campbell Bickerstaff

May 27, 2009

Campbell Bickerstaff

I am usually the one people come to when they need help with technology that is used to capture, store, transmit or receive information.

Spinning around – The Garrard 301

May 27, 2009

Campbell Bickerstaff
One of the reasons there is a paucity of ‘ultra fidelity’ components in the Museums collection is that their build quality is extraordinarily high and so they continue to be sought after by users and collectors.

Meet the curator – Geoff Barker

May 20, 2009

Geoff Barker

I specialise in nineteenth century Australian and Pacific photography and the links between science and photography.

Sydney Observatory Star Camera

May 20, 2009

Geoff Barker
I think one of the most underrated curatorial skills is the ability to remain engaged in your current research while at the same time making mental notes of everything that wanders across your field of vision.

The first Atlantic submarine telegraph cable

May 13, 2009

Matthew Connell
If you’re reading this then you are more than likely sitting at your computer using the internet, or if you’re one of the ‘cool kids’, and technologically savvy, then you may be reading it from your iphone on the bus.