ticket taker Frequently Asked Questions

Q:     I can't enter the virtual theater. What should I do?
A:     To enter the virtual theater, you need to have Flash 9 or higher installed on your computer. If you don't have Flash 9 or higher, you can download the most recent version of Flash.

Q:     Why does it take so long for things to download?
A:     It may be that you aren't using the most recent version of your web browser or Flash. If you are visiting Picturing the 1930s from a dial-up connection or during times of heavy Internet, traffic download times will be longer than normal.

Q:     How do I move around in the virtual theater?
A:     You can "walk" through the theater using the game-like controller. navigation arrows Using your mouse, click on an arrow to move in that direction. If you prefer, you can "jump" from one room to another using the theater's map. theater map Click on the room you wish to enter.

Q:     I've heard what the theater staff have to say. Can I turn them off?
A:     Yes. If you want someone in the theater to stop, click on him/her. If you move from room to room using the map, people will not speak until you click on them.

Q:     How do I select artworks for my movie?
A:     When you are in a room with artworks, use the arrow to move closer to the artwork you want. Click on the artwork to open the info screen and click on the "ADD TO BIN" button to select the artwork. For this to work, "cookies" must be enabled on your browser.

Q:     What is a cookie?
A:     A cookie is information the Web site puts on your computer's hard drive so the site can remember something — in this case, the artwork you want in your movie.

Q:     What is a bin?
A:     The bin is temporary storage that remembers the artworks you want in your movie. The term bin comes from the days of film editing when film clips were hung over large canvas containers called bins.

Q:     How do I make a movie?
A:     Follow the movie-making instructions You may wish to print them out before you begin.

Q:     I selected an artwork for my movie and clicked on "CONTINUE TO PRIMARY ACCESS," but I don't see the artwork. What do I do?
A:     When you click "CONTINUE TO PRIMARY ACCESS," PrimaryAccess opens on the "Start" tab. You will need to open the "Find" tab and select the option "Add to Folder" to use the selected artworks in your movie. Before attempting to make a movie, you may want to check out the PrimaryAccess guide at http://www.primaryaccess.org/guide/help.htm

Q:     I can barely hear the audio on my movie. What can I do?
A:     The volume setting on your microphone may be too low. Right-click on the volume control icon on your task bar. Select "Open Volume Control." Click "Options" and select "Properties." Select "Recording" and click OK. Select "Microphone" and adjust volume slider upward. (These instructions are for Windows XP.)

Q:     How do I submit a movie for inclusion in Picturing the 1930s?
A:     PrimaryAccess recognizes you as a registered user of Picturing the 1930s. When your movie is completed, PrimaryAccess saves it to the catalog that is viewable from the second floor balcony.

Q:     How does the Smithsonian decide if my movie will be included in Picturing the 1930s?
A:     All movies made using the movie making instructions and "published" in Primary Access will be included in Picturing the 1930s.

Q:     How will my friends know a movie in Picturing the 1930s is mine?
A:     To protect your privacy, your movie is identified only by its title and a movie number. Movies may have the same title, but each movie number is unique. Make sure you note the movie number assigned to your documentary. To insure that your friends and relatives know which one is yours, tell them the title and your movie number.

Q:     Does the Smithsonian own the copyright to my movie?
A:     The Smithsonian American Art Museum does not claim any ownership rights in the movie submitted for inclusion in Picturing the 1930s. However, by submitting a movie (including embedded text, music and/or sounds, non-Smithsonian images and/or photos, and similar materials), you grant the Smithsonian license to use these in any and all media, now or hereafter known, and for any institutional purpose whatsoever. The license you grant is non-exclusive; that is, you are free to license your content to others. The license you grant is considered fully-paid and royalty-free.

Q:     Can I upload my movie to YouTube?
A:     No. PrimaryAccess creates your movie dynamically each time you play it. Your movie is not a file that can be saved or uploaded to Web sites such as YouTube.

Q:     Where can I find information about the music, news reels, and historic photos used on this site?
A:     These assets have credit lines identifying their source. Links to these sources can be found in the resource room on the third floor.

Q:     Can I use the images on this Web site for other purposes?
A:     The contents of this website may be used for personal, educational and non-commercial use only. Please visit our Rights and Reproductions page for information on the use of images from the Smithsonian American Art Museum collection. The Smithsonian copyright policy may be found at http://www.si.edu/copyright/ Some images do not belong to the Smithsonian. Check the credits page and consult the owners for permission.

Q:     My question isn't answered on this page. Whom can I contact?
A:     For other questions or to send a comment, send email to AmericanArtEducation[at]si.edu

Q:     Is there someplace I can discuss one or more of these artworks?
A:     Yes. If you would like to discuss one or more of these artworks, go to http://www.flickr.com/groups/picturing_the_1930s/. You can join an existing discussion or start one of your own.