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Building Virtual Museum Exhibitions. ARCO Project Partners. The University of Sussex (UK) The Sussex Archaeological Society (UK) The Poznan University of Economics (Poland) Commissariat a l’Energie Atomique (France) Giunti Gruppo Editoriale (Italy) University of Bath (UK)

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building virtual museum exhibitions

Building Virtual Museum Exhibitions

Museum Association Conference – Brighton – 6-7th October 2003

arco project partners

ARCO Project Partners

The University of Sussex (UK)

The Sussex Archaeological Society (UK)

The Poznan University of Economics (Poland)

Commissariat a l’Energie Atomique (France)

Giunti Gruppo Editoriale (Italy)

University of Bath (UK)

Victoria and Albert Museum (UK)

Museum Association Conference – Brighton – 6-7th October 2003

arco team @ museum association conference brighton

ARCO-Team @ Museum Association Conference, Brighton

ARCO team on Stand 70

Martin White (UoS)—ARCO Project Manager

Krzysztof Walczak (PUE)—Database and Content Management

Manjula Patel (UKOLN)—Heritage Metadata

Patrick Sayd (CEA-LIST)—Digitisation

Rafal Wojciechowski (PUE, UoS)—Virtual and Augmented Reality

Miroslaw Stawniak (PUE)—Database and Content Management

John Manley (Sussex Past)—Small Museum Perspective

James Stevenson (VAM)—Large Museum Perspective

Fabrizio Giorgini (GIUNTI)—Business Models

Nicholaos Mourkoussis (UoS)—Metadata and XML Schemas

Joe Darcy (UoS)—3D Modelling of Museum Artefacts

Museum Association Conference – Brighton – 6-7th October 2003

presentation outline
Presentation Outline
  • ARCO Project Introduction – Martin White (UoS)
    • Tools for building virtual museum exhibitions
  • ARCO Technology Overview – Manjula Patel (UKOLN)
    • Creating and Manipulating 3D Models
    • Managing Cultural Object Database
    • Presentation of Cultural Objects using Virtual and Augmented Reality
  • Benefits for Small Museums – John Manley (SussexPast)
  • Benefits for Large Museums – James Stevenson (VAM)

Museum Association Conference – Brighton – 6-7th October 2003

arco background
ARCO Background
  • ARCO started in October 2001 as a three year RTD project
    • 1 year left to run, on schedule to finish September 2004
  • Seven partners including two museum pilot sites from 4 European countries
    • United Kingdom, France, Poland, Italy
  • Co-funded by the EC under the 5FP (IST)
    • Total investment is 2.8M Euro. 2.0M Euro from the EC

Museum Association Conference – Brighton – 6-7th October 2003

arco status
ARCO Status
  • Progress so far:
    • 4 prototype systems and components completed, various configurations demonstrated at:
      • COMDEX Fall 2002, Las Vegas
      • EVA 2003 Florence and London
      • Example 4th prototype components are exhibiting on stand 70
      • Two Museum User Trials, third in October at Sussex Past
    • Large dissemination activity:
      • Vision, Video and Graphics, UK
      • Visualisation, Imaging and Image Processing, Spain
      • Dublin Core, USA
  • Immediate Future Developments:
    • Final 12 months of project for more detailed system integration, assessment and evaluation, dissemination activities
    • Technology Implementation Plan

Museum Association Conference – Brighton – 6-7th October 2003

arco technology overview
ARCO Technology Overview
        • ARCO Project goals
        • Prototype systems and components
        • Digitisation of artefacts
        • 3D modelling and refinement
        • Storing and managing digitised objects
        • ARCO data model
        • Metadata in ARCO
        • Visualisation of digitised artefacts
  • Manjula Patel (UKOLN, University of Bath)

Museum Association Conference – Brighton – 6-7th October 2003

goals of the arco project
Goals of the ARCO Project
  • Develop innovative technology and expertise to help museums Create, Manipulate, Manage and Presentcultural objects in virtual exhibitions both within museums and over the Web
  • Why?
    • To allow museums to have an online (3D) presence
    • To enable interaction with digital representations of collections
  • How? By building a set of tools and processes from digitisation to visualisation:
    • Digital capture of artefacts, 3D modelling and refinement, Database and content management, Visualisation in virtual or augmented reality environments
    • Interoperability i.e. an Open Architecture
      • XML Data Exchange between tools and other systems
      • Internet, Web, graphics and metadata standards

Museum Association Conference – Brighton – 6-7th October 2003

arco prototype systems and components
ARCO Prototype Systems and Components

Museum Association Conference – Brighton – 6-7th October 2003

create digitise artefacts with the object modeller
Create: Digitise Artefacts with the Object Modeller
  • Method of modelling depends on features of the objects
    • Objects with simple geometryare modelled with modified 3ds max or Maya
  • For complex models we use a custom built stereo digital camera system:
    • Object geometry and textures are extracted from sequences of stereo pictures and merged to produce a 3D textured model
    • Portable in order to gain access to fragile artefacts
    • Ease of use for museum staff who are not experts in 3D measurement
    • Result should be an accurate 3D model of the artefact in terms of shape, texture and resolution
    • Automated stereo reconstruction as far as possible

Museum Association Conference – Brighton – 6-7th October 2003

manipulate 3d modelling and refinement
Manipulate: 3D Modelling and Refinement
  • A tool for interactive model refinement and rendering
  • Creation of simple models and refinement of digitised models
    • smoothing the object geometry
    • reducing polygon count for Internet based rendering
    • re-applying lighting
    • repairing missing parts
  • Database connectivity
    • search and browse objects
    • import and export models
    • (including models generated by
    • other methods,
    • e.g. Mechanical scanning,
    • Laser scanning)

Museum Association Conference – Brighton – 6-7th October 2003

media objects from creation manipulation stages
Media Objects fromCreation & Manipulation Stages
  • Sample media objects representing cultural objects in the database:
    • Images from the photogrammetry process
    • VRML models exported from model refinement

Museum Association Conference – Brighton – 6-7th October 2003

manage content management application
Manage: Content Management Application
  • All ARCO data is stored in a database for consistency
  • Museums do not manage the database directly, but through a Content Management Application (ACMA)
  • ACMA provides several managers for ease of data manipulation, e.g.
    • Cultural objects
    • X-VRML templates
    • Virtual exhibitions

Museum Association Conference – Brighton – 6-7th October 2003

arco data model
ARCO Data Model

Cultural Object: descriptive curatorial metadata, surrogate for the physical artefact

Acquired Object: digital representation of the physical artefact

Refined Object: acquired (or refined) object which has been modified

Media Object: individual object which makes up a digital representation (3D model, texture maps, description etc.)

Cultural Object

<<subclass>>

<<subclass>>

Acquired Object

Refined Object

<<refines>>

<<refines>>

+contains

+contains

+belongs to

+belongs to

Media Object

+includes

+is included

Museum Association Conference – Brighton – 6-7th October 2003

interoperability metadata for digital artefacts
Interoperability: Metadata for Digital Artefacts
  • AMS –ARCO Metadata Schema, is a vocabulary for describing processes from digitisation to visualisation:
    • Resource discovery metadata (DCMES)
    • Descriptive curatorial metadata (mda SPECTRUM)
    • Technical metadata (preservation)
    • Themed metadata (intelligence, effort report)
    • ARCO specific elements
  • Interoperability
    • Data exchange between ARCO components
    • Cross domain and compatibility with museum best practice
  • Implemented with XML Schemas

AMS Metadata Editor

Museum Association Conference – Brighton – 6-7th October 2003

presentation augmented reality interfaces
Presentation: Augmented Reality Interfaces
  • Visualisation of ARCO media objects from the database
    • VRML models, metadata, images, virtual exhibitions
  • Three visualisation interfaces, same database contents
    • Remote Web Interface (search, browse)
    • Local Museum touch-screen (search, browse)
    • Local Augmented Reality environment (interact)

Museum Association Conference – Brighton – 6-7th October 2003

virtual museum exhibitions and galleries
Virtual Museum Exhibitions and Galleries

Museum Association Conference – Brighton – 6-7th October 2003

slide18

Benefits for Small MuseumsSussex Archaeology SocietySix regional museums in Sussexwith some 500,000 objectsJohn Manley (Sussex Past)

Museum Association Conference – Brighton – 6-7th October 2003

small museum attributes
Small Museum Attributes
  • Some attributes of small museums…
    • They are in the majority
    • Often no dedicated ICT staff
    • Very often no professional photographic skills
    • They are not well-funded
    • But they are cherished, rooted in their localities, and aspire to do their best
    • They strive to achieve national standards

Museum Association Conference – Brighton – 6-7th October 2003

incarcerating objects
Incarcerating Objects
  • The small museum as a prison …
    • Objects in them once had real lives and, for example, were meant to be handled, or worn, or drunk from, or contained something, or displayed on walls etc, often in the immediate locality
    • We remove them from those local contexts and then lock them in glass display cases
    • We can no longer explore their physicality in the round
    • And then the museum curator tells us what’s important about the object

Museum Association Conference – Brighton – 6-7th October 2003

liberating objects
Liberating Objects
  • ARCO system as liberator …
    • ARCO can display, remotely or in-gallery, objects in the round
    • Can link objects with other objects and local places where they were found
    • Offers different visual perspectives of an object which can provoke novel opinions from the viewer, avoiding reliance on the curator
    • Enhances the sensual experience of the physicality of real objects

Museum Association Conference – Brighton – 6-7th October 2003

arco benefits for small museums
ARCO Benefits for Small Museums
  • ARCO and small museums…
    • ARCO provides interactivity, and intelligent, non-passive artefacts
    • Liberates them from the glass case and curators’ labels
    • Decreases the psychological distance between object and viewer
    • Moves a step closer to allowing objects to be experienced as real things, once used by local people in their own localities

Museum Association Conference – Brighton – 6-7th October 2003

slide23

Benefits for Large Museums

Victoria and Albert MuseumA large national museum

with some 4 million objects

James Stevenson (VAM)

Museum Association Conference – Brighton – 6-7th October 2003

object base
Object base

Museum Association Conference – Brighton – 6-7th October 2003

why we make images
Why we make images
  • Publications
  • Catalogues
  • Collections management
  • Web site
  • Education
    • In the museum
    • On the web

Museum Association Conference – Brighton – 6-7th October 2003

education
Education
  • DCMS targets and objectives
  • All funding bodies have similar targets
  • Improve access
  • Social inclusion

Museum Association Conference – Brighton – 6-7th October 2003

how do you describe an object
How do you describe an object?
  • Words, text
  • Objects are 3D
  • They have a front and back
  • Top and bottom
  • They have mass and volume

Museum Association Conference – Brighton – 6-7th October 2003

slide28

Photographer: Pip Barnard

Museum Association Conference – Brighton – 6-7th October 2003

slide29

Photographer: Pip Barnard

Museum Association Conference – Brighton – 6-7th October 2003

slide30

Photographer: Pip Barnard

Museum Association Conference – Brighton – 6-7th October 2003

how we are doing this
How we are doing this?
  • Quick time movies
  • Large volume of content on the web site
  • Panoramas of galleries
  • Virtual spaces

Museum Association Conference – Brighton – 6-7th October 2003

what 3d models can do
What 3D models can do
  • Add new ways of seeing
  • Give a greater degree of spatial awareness
  • Allow comparison of volume and mass
  • Be placed in virtual spaces
  • Help create the virtual museum

Museum Association Conference – Brighton – 6-7th October 2003

issues
Issues
  • Difficult to achieve
  • Expensive
  • Complex
  • New set of skills
  • Studio or workshop restricted

Museum Association Conference – Brighton – 6-7th October 2003

tools
Tools
  • Easy to use
  • Very simple software
  • Content management
  • Link to museums collections management
  • Simple model refinement
  • Simple insertion into web pages and virtual galleries

Museum Association Conference – Brighton – 6-7th October 2003

museum user roles
Museum User Roles
  • Create test situations
  • Access to museum content
  • Test developments by technical partners
  • Evaluate results
  • Encourage use by other museums

Museum Association Conference – Brighton – 6-7th October 2003

conclusions
Conclusions
  • ARCO is developing an open architecture that integratesstate-of-the-art with ARCO specific technologies to enable museums to build virtual exhibitions
    • Digitisation and modelling of 3D museum artefacts (OM)
    • Refinement and creation of the 3D virtual museum artefacts (MR)
    • Object relational database and content management (ACMA)
    • Visualisation of museum exhibits in virtual environments (ARIF)
    • Integrated through XML technologies (X-VRML, AMS, XDE)
  • ARCO tools are end user driven through museum pilot sites being closely integrated into the design process
  • Visit us at the ARCO website:
    • http://www.arco-web.org/
    • Stand 70

Museum Association Conference – Brighton – 6-7th October 2003

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