An interactive 3D immersion experience, powered by 3D technology from Dassault Systemes, is letting students and history buffs go back in time to explore the world-famous Giza plateau, home of the historic Giza Necropolis.
Dassault, which has been involved in similar projects, including using 3D technologies to recreate the mystery of the Pyramid of Kheops, has partnered with the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston on the creation of the Giza Archives Project and Giza 3D. Giza 3D is an interactive Web application that lets users roam through the Necropolis, visit carefully restored tombs, shafts, and burial chambers, as well as enter into four of the site's ancient temples, including the Khufu and Menkaure pyramids. Using the browser interface, visitors can explore contemporary and ancient pictures of the site, view 30 objects from that time (meticulously reconstructed in 3D), while also gaining access to photos, field journals, maps, and other items from the MFA's Giza Archives Website to support an extended-learning experience.
Dassault Systemes and Harvard University are launching a project to explore the use of immersive virtual reality and interactive 3D in the classroom. As such, Harvard Egyptology students are being offered courses using an immersive 3D real-time virtual reconstruction of the Giza plateau.
Monica Menghini, executive vice president of industry for Dassault, said in a press release:
Today, the archaeological site of Giza is within reach of everyone -- a simple home computer is sufficient to experience the wonders of Ancient Egypt, and with a 3D TV, it is possible to have an immersive stereoscopic experience. The use of immersive rooms permits viewers to travel in space and time with unrivaled realism.
The Giza 3D application is based on work started more than a century ago by George Reisner, a renowned Egyptologist. Begun in earnest 10 years ago to pick up on Reisner's efforts, Reisner's collection of photos, diaries, drawings, and documents were digitized and made available online by the MFA through its Giza Archives. Using this information source, Dassault took the project even further, using its immersive 3D technologies, simulation tools, virtual reality, and visualization capabilities to build a multi-platform 3D experience for the Web, augmented reality systems, and potentially movie theaters and game consoles.
The Giza 3D project is also finding a footing in education. Dassault is collaborating on a project with Harvard University to explore the use of immersive virtual reality and interactive 3D offerings like Giza 3D in the classroom. For now, Harvard Egyptology students are being offered classes where they use an immersive 3D virtual experience that reconstructs the Giza plateau to go back in time. They can also extend the classroom experience by accessing the free Giza 3D Web application.
Crazy, isn' it. I expect these 3D experiences to come fast and furiously. There are some really unbelievable applications in terms of presenting a multi-faceted, immersive learning experience, whether it's taking a trip back in historical times or using the 3D tools to deliver learning experiences around engineering practices, medical procedures, etc.
Take all of the 3D, combined with something like the new LEAP...hard to imagine what it will all lead to. It should prove to be very interesting though! From an engineering point it could and probably will totally change how things are designed. And that's just one thing.
That seems to be the idea. I worked on a military project where they would have like to have had such a model of the battlefield. Back then we assumed that we would use holographic technology to do this.
Spot on, Cadman-LT. The combination of 3D technologies and the new haptics and user input devices like the Leap (all of which are taking a page from the gaming industry) are really pushing the 3D envelope. We'll see that experience translated into immersive virtual experiences like Giza and other historical endeavors, but will also see it making its way into full-blown engineering environments that will make the whole design experience much more interactive and immersive without having to have access to a multi-million virtual reality CAVE.
For industrial control applications, or even a simple assembly line, that machine can go almost 24/7 without a break. But what happens when the task is a little more complex? That’s where the “smart” machine would come in. The smart machine is one that has some simple (or complex in some cases) processing capability to be able to adapt to changing conditions. Such machines are suited for a host of applications, including automotive, aerospace, defense, medical, computers and electronics, telecommunications, consumer goods, and so on. This discussion will examine what’s possible with smart machines, and what tradeoffs need to be made to implement such a solution.