Developing a 3-D Digital Heritage Ecosystem: from object to representation and the role of a virtual museum in the 21st century Open Data

Fred Limp, Angie Payne, Katie Simon, Snow Winters and Jack Cothren

Center for Advanced Spatial Technologies, JBHT 304, University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, AR U.S.A. Email: flimp@uark.edu

Cite this as: F. Limp et al. 2011 'Developing a 3-D Digital Heritage Ecosystem: from object to representation and the role of a virtual museum in the 21st century', Internet Archaeology 30. https://doi.org/10.11141/ia.30.1

Summary

3-D ceramic image with relief motifs identified and extracted from the 3-D vessel and viewed in isolation

This article addresses the application of high-precision 3-D recording methods to heritage materials (portable objects), the technical processes involved, the various digital products and the role of 3-D recording in larger questions of scholarship and public interpretation. It argues that the acquisition and creation of digital representations of heritage must be part of a comprehensive research infrastructure (a digital ecosystem) that focuses on all of the elements involved, including (a) recording methods and metadata, (b) digital object discovery and access, (c) citation of digital objects, (d) analysis and study, (e) digital object reuse and repurposing, and (f) the critical role of a national/international digital archive.

The article illustrates these elements and their relationships using two case studies that involve similar approaches to the high-precision 3-D digital recording of portable archaeological objects, from a number of late pre-Columbian villages and towns in the mid-central US (c. 1400 CE) and from the Egyptian site of Amarna, the Egyptian Pharaoh Akhenaten's capital (c. 1300 BCE).

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