KidsRoom sign in sheetThis Website


This website is designed for very fast Internet connections and was tested primarily on Netscape Navigator 3.0 and Internet Explorer 3.0.

For best viewing:

  • Please adjust the width of your browser so the banner on the main page and the border around screen is visible in your window. If you do this, all the other pages should format well.

  • Install the QuickTime plug-in for your browser. The QuickTime plug-in for Netscape can be obtained for free from The movie files in the story section are large, but they are probably the best way to get a feel for the interactive nature of the KidsRoom. The movies include sound.

  • Make sure your browser can play MIDI files so that you hear the background MIDI music. This is the same music used in the actual room.

  • Adjust your computer's volume controls so that the MIDI volume is much higher than the synthesizer volume. This will allow you to hear the background MIDI music and also hear the narration at the same time.

Worth keeping in mind:

  • Audio files are in the .aiff (also known as .aif) format, sampled at 8kHz. On slow connections, most of these sound samples will be impractical to load. If that's the case for you, think about playing just a few to ascertain the personality of each character in the story. Note that when you click on an audio file before the current page has fully loaded, you will stop the loading process! If you are planning on loading the videos, you will hear many of the character narrations at that time.

  • Depending upon how your browser is setup, you may experience some problems when playing .aiff files. For instance, on Netscape Navigator 3.0, when you click on a .aiff link to play a sound in the story pages the animated gifs (mostly located at the bottom of the page) will stop playing. Hit refresh to restart them.

    If you are running Explorer, the background midi files may stop playing when you click on a .aiff file.

    In general, the pages may work better if you read/view the entire page listening to the MIDI background music first and once you have seen all the animated gifs and heard the music, then click on some .aiff files to hear the narration.

  • The quality of the MIDI music is directly correlated with the quality of your MIDI synthesizer. Unless you have a Korg synthesizer, chances are the music sounded a whole lot better in the actual KidsRoom.

  • The QuickTime videos in the story section are huge, but if you really want to see how the room worked, they are worth it. Even when the movies are stored locally (i.e. on your disk or on a CD-ROM) they can take about 10 seconds to load, so be patient! If the sound "jitters," try stopping the movie and restarting it, which seems to fix the problem.


  Story - Playspace - Technology - People - Info  

The KidsRoom - Perceptual Computing Group - MIT Media Laboratory