Web-Designer for virtual museums TUC 1 Introduction • This e-course is organized through Training Unit able to be Capitalized(TUC) which can be decomposed into Didactic Unit (U.D.) and Learning Object (L.O). • In order to understand the main logic behind the organization of this programme, notice that: • each T.U.C involves several educational goals, which sum up to the basic skills of a web-designer for virtual museums; • each D.U discusses one single educational goal through several topics; • each L.O identifies one single topic. All L.O together compose the whole e-course.
DU 1 Upload the database • This lecture unit focuses on the main advantages of a “dynamic” web site, by which user-friendly interactive databases are developed. The System of Management for interactive databases (RDBMS) is crucial in order to create a virtual museum. In this scenario, DU1 is specifically aimed at web-designers whose expertise is applied for “museum- communication” purposes. • The objectives of DU1 are: • to plan and realize a System of Managing Relational Databases; • to define the structure of the database (organizing data in tables and their connections); • to identify the operations that can be executed in interactive modality.
The advantages of using such technologies are: Dynamically edit, change, or add any content of a Web page; Respond to user queries or data submitted from HTML forms; Access any data or databases and return the results to a browser; Customize a Web page to make it more useful for individual users; Provide security and access control to different Web pages; Tailor your output to different types of browsers; Minimize the network traffic. LO 1.0 Details Databases and the publication of data on the Internet
LO 1.0 Practice (Forum) For a better understanding of this topic, associate “weights” to each of the RDBMS advantages reported below. Use (*), (**) and (***) in order to indicate low, medium and high relevance respectively. Explains the main rationale behind your choice in the last column. Finally, discuss your choices with your colleagues.
LO 1.1 Abstract General Information • The models and techniques of organizing databases have developed in such a way that they satisfy the needs of users to have a faster and easier access to a larger amount of information. • Shortly, the concept of a database can be defined as being one or more collections of interdependent organized data, together with the description of the data and the relation between them. • Relational databases refer to a collection of data, structured as tables called relations. The term “relational” comes from the fact that each registration in the database contains information referring to a single subject. Moreover, the data organized in categories of information can be manoeuvred by a single entity, based on values of associated data.
LO 1.1 Details Fundamental objectives of a database • 1. Centralization of data in a database solves the following problems: • suppressing the redundancy of data; • ensuring the uniqueness of registrations; • centralized control of data; • 2. Interdependence between data and the application programmes: updating of data from a database must not affect programmes of data modelling. • 3. The possibility of connecting data entities, which are indispensable for an efficient exploitation of the informatics system. • 4. The integrity of data provides the reliability and coherence of the database. Thus we must define integrity restrictions like: • belonging to a list of values or interval; • belonging to a certain format; • rules of coherence with other data.
LO 1.1 Details Fundamental objectives of a database • 5. Security of data: the database must be protected against any logical or physical destruction (updating anomaly). This is done by saving, from time to time, some copies of the database. • 6. The confidentiality of datais assured by procedures of: • identification of users by name or code; • authentication by password; • authorization of differentiated access by rights of creation, consultation, modification or erasing for certain segments of data. • 7.The division of data allows the connection of transactions simultaneously solicited on the same registration of the database, by blocking waiting requests and their ulterior serving
LO 1.1 Case studies COMPASS – Database of the British Museum • COMPASS (Collections Multimedia Public Access System) (http://www.thebritishmuseum.ac.uk/compass/) is an online database featuring around 5,000 objects chosen by curators to reflect the extraordinary range of the British Museum’s collection. The database has versions for both adults and children. • The website is visited by a large number of people. According to their statistics, the number of page views to the site are: • 2002 – 8,227,638 • 2003 – 12,866,087 • 2004 – 18,153,123 • The COMPASS website was paid for by a generous donation by the Annenberg Foundation ( http://www.whannenberg.org/ ) which enabled the Museum to restore and re-vamp the Reading Room at the British Museum. The COMPASS project was part of this. The Children’s COMPASS site was funded by the Ford Motor Company Fund.
The adult section is very well organized and there are several searching facilities depending on the area of interest of the visitor. Moreover, there are many useful links and also background information on almost every item. There are online tours on a variety of subjects and there is also information about current exhibitions. The online tours cover a wide range of topics, starting from New Tours and The British Museum to collections referring to Africa, Americas, Europe, Greece, Rome, Egypt and so on. Apart for the fact that each object featured is illustrated with high quality scalable images for detailed study, there is also plenty of information about the objects, as well as references and links to related objects. The database was designed for the general visitor and thus the information has been written accordingly. Therefore, technical terms are explained in glossary links and if one is interested in learning more about an item, most of the articles give references to books written or recommended by the Museum’s curators. Children’s COMPASS was launched in February 2002 and uses a search engine designed for children. Apart from the children’s tours and the articles written for 7-11 year old pupils, there are also classroom activities and quizzes, as well as an Ask the Expert facility. The online tours are specially written to cover topics from the UK National Curriculum, including Literacy, Numeracy, Science and Art as well as History. There are also examples of children’s work, online animations, games and puzzles, web links and reading lists. In addition to the online tours, there is also a Search engine that allows children to look for information from the following areas: Africa, the Americas, Anglo-Saxon England, Asia, Ancient Egypt, Europe, Ancient Greece and Roman Britain. LO 1.1 Case studies COMPASS – Database of the British Museum
Children’s COMPASS was planned so that children with disabilities could use it as well. The worksheets have a set of teaching suggestions for how they may be adapted, both for children with learning difficulties, as well as for those who need extension activities. For those with reading difficulties, there is software available for reading the text on children’s COMPASS aloud. Children’s COMPASS has been designed from the outset with visually impaired users in mind (ttp://www.thebritishmuseum.ac.uk/compass/ixbin/hixclient.exe?_IXDB_=compass&search-form=graphical/edu/main.html&submit-button=search). Thus a text-only version of most screens enables screen-readers to browse, while text size and colour can be easily changed using the browser tools. The site has been designed and evaluated by the New Media Unit at the British Museum, in consultation with local primary schools and with the advice and assistance of the Museum Education Department. According to Tim Jacques from the New Media Unit, the following worked on COMPASS website: Head of New Media – project manager Content Manager – responsible for the content on the site Imaging Manager – responsible for the images on the site Creative Editor – responsible for all the text Design Manager – responsible for the design of the site Access Officer – responsible for all access issues for the site Education Editor – responsible for the editorial content on the Children’s COMPASS site Imaging Assistant – helping the Imaging Manager and also HTML coding for some pages Support Officer – administration for COMPASS Project I.S. Support – IT support for the project, though not full time on COMPASS alone LO 1.1 Case studies COMPASS – Database of the British Museum
In addition, there were also Editorial Assistants to help with editing the text, and curators and freelancers who wrote the object text. Also, there were a number of interns who worked for fixed periods of time, usually to compliment their studies. The technology for the site and delivering it to the web was provided by a company called System Simulation Ltd. Their Index+ (www.ssl.co.uk) software provided the database. System Simulation Ltd. offers a comprehensive package of support arrangements tailored to user requirements. Training is provided for application builders, database administrators and end-users. Tools for importing data from a wide range of third party files and databases to Index+ applications are also available. Information management systems frequently require support for a range of specialist functions as well as the basic storage and retrieval facilities. The application tools provided with Index + are designed so that appropriately tailored systems are very easy to make, use and maintain. The facilities provided by this software include: Interfaces to newswire systems Storage management for large text and image archives Interfaces to Point of Sale equipment Interfaces to EDI systems Interfaces to scanning and OCR software Script-based multimedia authoring Loan management Exhibition design Index+ has been successfully integrated with RDBMS and other more specialised applications. LO 1.1 Case studies COMPASS – Database of the British Museum
COMPASS – Database of the British Museum System Simulation Ltd. has implemented the British Museum’s new Merlin collections management system based on MUSIMS. Data have been imported from the previous system and the data structures and procedures have been upgraded in line with modern and international museum standards. The Terminology Client includes thesauri developed by the British Museum and other international standards. The Unicode facility enables the museum to catalogue and search using historical and non-European scripts. Merlin provides data and resources for the COMPASS public access system through an integrated Index+ Content Management System, also supplied by System Simulation Ltd. System Simulation Ltd. worked closely with the COMPASS team and supplied the software architecture for the COMPASS project. Thus, the Content Development System was used for the creation and management of all content including selected data imports from Merlin (the Museum’s collection management system) and the Publishing Pipelines delivering content to all versions of COMPASS on the web and to the specially designed touch-screen consoles in the Reading Room. COMPASS offers a variety of interfaces for exploring the Museum’s collections in new ways, therefore enabling visitors to get a better understanding of objects and their contexts. Children’s COMPASS find specially designed features for children, as well as parents, teachers and schools. The programs presented there are aimed at the specific needs of both teachers and children, and the subject areas of the UK National Curriculum. There is also a high-access text-only version provided for visually impaired visitors. For the outstanding efforts to ensure that the website is accessible to visually impaired people, The British Museum – COMPASS won the Visionary Design Award 2002 from the National Library for the Blind. LO 1.1 Case studies
LO 1.2 Abstract The relational model Therelational model was defined and published for the first time in 1970 by Dr. Edgar F. Codd, a researcher at the IBM laboratories from San Jose (California), who published his works referring to the relational model for databases. This relational model has the advantage that it allows the designer of the database to study the properties of the managing system of the database without being forced to implement it. The theoretical fundament of this kind of a database is represented by the mathematical theory of relations. One of the main characteristics of the relational model is its simplicity and strictness from a theoretical point of view, a fact that placed it before other models, being adopted within the last decade by the majority of researchers and programmers in the field. The data and relations are explicitly represented, using a logical structure called relation. On the other hand, the relational model was mathematically defined, providing a modern means of studying the logical properties of a database system. Unlike the relational model, other models, previously used, the hierarchy model and the network model did not have such a powerful theoretical background. Another essential difference between the relational model and the other two models is that while the former is oriented towards a multitude, the other two are file oriented; this results from the fact that if for the hierarchy model and the network model the programmer must design procedural programmes, which should access the database registration by registration using physical connections for registrations while for the relational model, just one instruction in an non-procedural language (like SQL – Structured Query Language), usually determines the modelling of more registrations
LO 1.2 Abstract The relational model Another particular property for the relational model is that only the logical properties of the database can be addressed and not the physical ones, because it is not oriented towards the calculation system. As a result, the model does not include the rules, structures and operations referring to the physical implementation of the database system. However, one of the objectives of the relational model was to introduce a clear distinction between the physical and logical aspects of a database, an objective called by E. F. Codd “the independence of data”. At the beginning of the theoretical foundation of the relational model, there were serious fears regarding the efficiency of applying the relational model for large databases. The extraordinary technological development in the field of electronics and informatics within the past few years is obvious in the rise of the modelling power of computers and has led to the elimination of these fears through the large use of the relational database systems including on personal computers.
LO 1.2 Details The components of the relational model The components of the relational model are: • The relational structure of data. Within relational databases, the data is organised as tables, called relations. Associations between relations are explicitly represented through connection attributes. • The operators of the relational model. They define the operations that can be done on relations, with the purpose of realising the data modelling functions (visualisation, insertion, modification, erasing). • Integrity restrictions of the relational model. Also called integrity rules they define the demands that must be satisfied by the data within the database in order to be considered as correct and coherent compared to the real world that they reflect.
LO 1.3 Abstract Management systems of the relational databases • In order to reach the objectives for which it was created, a database must have an associated system of data management, which is the software of the database. • Through the system of data management the following activities can be accomplished: • defining the structure of the database (organizing data in tables and their connection); • introducing and modifying data; • fast access to data through different types of interrogations; • presentation of data as reports (listed on the screen or printed) in which the data resulted from interrogations are summarized; • security of data; • A database management system (DBMS) is a mechanism whose fundamental principle lies, generally speaking, in the so-called abstracting of data stored on the support. There are three abstracting levels corresponding to the three models of data: physical, conceptual and logical. (Figure 1) • The physical model (or internal) regards the data as they are stored on the • support and represents the zero level of abstracting; • The conceptual model regards the data through its real significance; • The logical model (or internal) regards the data through the eyes of the final user. For a database there may be more logical models, depending on the different possible categories of final users.
LO 1.3 Details Planning databases • Projecting database applications implies, from this point of view, two extremely important initial steps: logical projection and physical implementation of the data model. The data model forms the basis of the entire application system which will exploit the database. The logical projection refers to the establishment of the conceptual model of the database, which is independent compared to the particular DBMS that will be used. The result of this first step is a document that will contain the detailed definition of the data structures which will be implemented. The physical implementation consists of the transposition of the conceptual model produced in the previous step, on the specific DBMS. • The main RDBMS that are the basis of dynamic and interactive Web pages: • Oracle (www.oracle.com) • Microsoft SQL Server (www.microsoft.com/sql/) • Microsoft Access (www.office.microsoft.com/en-us/default.aspx) • MySQL (www.mysql.com)
LO 1.3 R D B M S User 1 User 2 User n External Model Applications Objects (data sources) + properties (attributes) Conceptual Model The Physical Structure of Data Internal Model Storing environment 1 Storing environment 2 Storing environment n Practice Figure 1 Abstracting levels of a RDBMS
LO 1.4 Abstract Configuration of databases • According to these objectives, the construction of a database implies the following steps: • analysis of the system (domain) for which the database is projected; • projecting the structure of the database; • introducing the data in the database; • exploitation and maintenance of the database. • The first step in the configuration of the database is the setting out of the objects that must be included and their properties. A single object together with its properties forms an entity of data. Each entity of data must be unique in order to be differentiated from the others. The properties of the objects included in entities of data are called attributes. The identification of objects (data sources) together with their properties is called data modelling.
LO 1.4 Abstract Configuration of databases • The purpose of the data model is to create a logical representation of the data structure, used for the creation of the database. The models using objects and tables (which will be created afterwards on the grounds of these objects) are called conceptual data models. • For the configuration of databases we identify two conceptual data methods or models: • the bottom-up method for the creation of an application database. According to this method the configuration of the database begins with the image of data listed on the screen or with a printed report. It is used for the creation of a simple database, which uses a single type of data object; • the top-down method, in which the configuration begins with the identification of objects (data sources) for the creation of subject databases (databases formed by tables dedicated to a single class of subjects). • A better solution is the configuration of databases with the help of groups of objects which are connected by subject. This means the use of the top-down method (model).
LO 1.4 Details Objectives • The main objectives that must be fulfilled after the configuration process of a database are: • fulfilling the needs of the user for getting updated information in time and economically; • the elimination and minimization of repetition (redundancy) of data from the database; • providing fast access to certain information elements from the database, necessary for different categories of users; • the possibility of extending the database according to the users’ needs; • the security of data which consists of stopping the access of unauthorised persons to the database; • the easiness in the creation of applications for the introduction, editing, listing and rediscovering of information.
LO 1.5 Abstract Physical implementation of data (a) • The Implementation of data consists of the transposition of data entities in tables made up of columns (fields) and rows (registrations). The attributes of entities together with the connection attributes (which will be added) will be the columns (fields) of the tables. The values associated to these fields represent the rows (registrations) from tables. • The implementation of relations between entities can be made through four possibilities: • one-to-one – the value of the key field from a single registration from the new table must correspond to a unique value of the associated field from the existing table (the tables have a one-to-one correspondence of rows – one row in a table cannot have more than one corresponding row in the other table); • one-to-many – the field main key from the first table must be unique, but the values from the key field of the second table may be associated with more entries (one-to-more relations ties a single row in a table to more rows from another table by means of a relation between the primary key of the main table and the corresponding key of the associated table);
LO 1.5 Abstract Physical implementation of data (a) • many-to-one – the new table may have more values in the key field which may correspond to a unique value of the associated field from the existing table (it is the opposite of the one-to-many relation; • many-to-many – they have no restrictions, there are no unique relations between the key fields from the existing table or the new table; both key fields contain duplicate values. These types of relations cannot be expressed as simple relations between two participating entities. In order to create a many-to-many relation we must create an intermediary table which should have many-to-one relations with two main tables. • Observation: we must remember the fact that many-to-one and one-to-many relations are one and the same thing, depending on the table to which we refer.
LO 1.6 Abstract Physical implementation of data (b) The normalization is a standard procedure by means of which the attributes of data are grouped in tables, and tables are grouped in databases. The purposes of the normalization are the following: • the elimination of doubles in the tables; • the permission of carrying out future modifications in the structure of tables; • minimizing the impact of structural modifications of the database in the applications of users who use the data.
LO 1.6 Abstract Physical implementation of data (b) • The normalization is carried out in five steps (forms of normalization): • the first normal form indicates that the tables must be plane and must not contain repetitions of groups; • in the second normal form the data from the columns without key are completely depending on the main key; • for the third normal form, all the columns without a key in a table must respect the rules of the first and the second normal form; • for the fourth normal form, independent data entities must not be stored within the same table when between these entities there are many-to-many relations (it eliminates the redundancy due to m:n relations). • for the fifth normal form, the exact reconstruction of the original table from those tables from which it had been separated, must be possible; it seldom appears in practice.
The publication of data on the Internet DU 2 • For the creation of the Web site of the European Virtual Museum, we used Microsoft Active Server Pages technology. Further on we are going to introduce the main elements which are part of this technology • This lecture unit explains deeply what is meant by (a) HTML, (b) ASP and (c) how entering the database thought the web. Main features of SQL (structure Query language) and Java programming are discussed. • The objectives of DU2 are: • to identify the operations that can be executed in interactive modality; • to know how to use the main software for realizing the web pages.
LO 2.1 Abstract HyperText Markup Language • One of the first fundamental elements of the WWW (World Wide Web) is HTML (HyperText Markup Language), a standard which describes the primary format in which the documents are being distributed and seen on the WEB. Many of its features, as the independence of the platform, the structuring of formatting and the hypertext connections, make it a very good format for documents published on the Internet. • The official HTML standard is given by World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) which is affiliated to Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF). W3C stated a few versions of the HTML specification, like HTML 2.0, HTML 3.0, HTML 3.2, HTML 4.0, HTML 4.01 and, most recently XHTML (Extensible HyperText Markup Language). At the same time the authors of browsers (navigators) like Netscape (Netscape Navigators) and Microsoft (Internet Explorer), have often developed their own HTML “extensions” excluding the standard process and incorporated them in their own browsers.
LO 2.1 Abstract HyperText Markup Language • Presently, HTML 4.0 is widely utilized and the HTML specifications have already been published. HTML language offers WEB designers the following possibilities: • to publish the documents with headers, texts, tables, lists, photographs etc.; • to find information on-line by means of hyperlinks accessed by a simple mouse click; • to project forms for the achievement of transactions with distant servers, for searching for information or for commerce specific activities; • to include table calculation sheet, video clips, sounds and other applications directly in documents.
LO 2.1 Details The origins of HTLM • HTML was initially developed by Tim Berners-Lee at CERN (Centre Européen de Recherche Nucléaire) in 1989. HTML is a language based on SGML (Standard Generalized Markup Language) which is an international standard (ISO – 8879) approved in 1986. HTML was initially seen as a possibility for physicians using different computers to change information between them by means of the Internet. Thus a few conditions were necessary: independence of the platform, hypertext possibilities and structuring of documents. • The independence of the platform means that a document can be listed in a similar way (or almost identical) by different computers, vital for a numerous and various audience. Hypertext is translated by the fact that any word, phrase, image or element of the document seen by the user (client) can refer to another document or even to paragraphs within the same document, which makes the navigation between components of the same document or between multiple documents easier. The strict structuring of documents allows their conversion from one format into another as well as the interrogation of a database containing these documents.
LO 2.3 Abstract ActiveX Data Object (ADO) • ADO is used to access a database through a WEB page. It was created by Microsoft and it is automatically installed at the same time with Microsoft IIS (Internet Information Server) package. By means of the ADO component the following operations in an ASP file may be fulfilled: • The creation of an ADO connection with the database; • Opening the connection with the database; • The creation of an ADO recordset; • Opening a recordset; • Drawing out the necessary data from a recordset; • Closing a recordset; • Closing the connection with the database.
LO 2.4 Abstract • Structured Query Language (SQL) • SQL is an ANSI (American National Standards Institute) standard language used for the querying of MS Access, MS SQL Server, DB2, Informix, Oracle, Sybase databases etc. • With the help of SQL we can make selection or action queries (adding, deleting and modifying registrations) upon databases. It consists of: • SQL Queries – for querying the database; • SQL Data Manipulation Language (DML) – which allows the introduction, deletion and updating of data (registrations) by using the instructions: • INSERT INTO – introducing new data in a table of the database; • DELETE – deleting registrations; • UPDATE – updating (modifying) registrations.
LO 2.4 Abstract Structured Query Language (SQL) • SQL Data Definition Language (DDL) – allows the creation, modification and deletion of tables in the database, as well as the creation and deletion of an index (search key). For this purpose the following instructions are being used: • CREATE TABLE • ALTER TABLE • DROP TABLE • CREATE INDEX • DROP INDEX
LO 2.4 Case studies The State Hermitage Museum The Hermitage Museum Project, as a partnership between IBM Corporate Community Relations () and the State Hermitage Museum in St. Petersburg, began in 1997. The website () presents significant historical information on the Hermitage Museum, its extensive collections, offerings, events, membership and special exhibitions. The Hermitage Museum website enables the world to see the Hermitage collections from anywhere in the world using IBM Digital Library technology, based on IBM RS/6000 computers and IBM Digital Library software from the IBM Santa Teresa, California Lab. The special application software was created in IBM's e-business Solution Centre in Naples, Italy and the site design and user interface of the website were developed by IBM's e-business Services in Atlanta, Georgia: http://www.haifa.il.ibm.com/projects/software/hermitage/index.html. At the core of the project is IBM's Image Creation Studio based on IBM Research's Pro/3000 Scanner with PC's and special image processing software, which produce high quality, high resolution digital images from originals or transparencies of works of art from the Hermitage collections. The images feature IBM's patented digital invisible watermark technology to protect Hermitage image usage rights. For this project, 2000 images have been scanned and retouched by the Hermitage Museum staff.
LO 2.4 Case studies The State Hermitage Museum The Hermitage Museum website provides a searchable database of high resolution images from 12 distinctive categories of works (painting, prints and drawings; sculpture; machinery and mechanisms; arms and armour; furniture and carriages; ceramics and porcelain; applied arts; jewellery; textiles; numismatics and glyptics; costume; archaeological artefacts), HotMedia images of selected rooms and items, Query By Image Content Search (QBIC Search) and the "Zoom View" Java-based technology developed expressly for this project. It allows the user to zoom in on a particular part of an illustration for detailed analysis and to study descriptive material (http://www.hermitagemuseum.org/html_En/index.html). Query By Image Content search technology allows users locate works using visual tools, by selecting colours from a palette or by sketching shapes on a canvas. With advanced search visitors can find a particular item by selecting a specific category of artworks, the type of item, the style, trend or tendency, country of origin, theme, genre, the personage represented and the data range. In the section Zoom View Gallery users can scrutinize the slightest details of an artwork using an innovative technology. High-resolution images are provided by IBM's specialized Image Creation Studio using patented IBM technology developed at Watson Research labs to digitize art objects and protect images. The network used to host the website includes multiple „farms” of IBM RS/6000 and support millions of „hits” each day.
DU 3 Software used for modelling 3D images • Images and graphics are a fundamental source of communication. 2D and especially 3D graphics are quickly becoming an integral part of dynamic, interactive web sites. • Following is a description of some 3D graphics software currently available. • The objectives of DU 3 consist in: • to know how to use the main software for realizing the images in 3D; • to know how to converse profitable with the professional figures of the expert of the contents and with the project leader.
LO 3.1 Abstract Software 3D Object Modeller 3DSOM from Creative Dimension Software Ltd. is a fast, cost-effective software tool for generating photo-realistic 3D models from images of real objects, based on technology originally developed by Canon. With the 3DSOM Viewer Java applet, interactive plug in-free 3D content can easily be created for compelling e-commerce sites, eye-catching internet advertising, online museum exhibitions, and more. A fully customised 3D modelling service is also available delivering high quality multimedia content for CD marketing campaigns, exhibitions, education, digital product brochures and streaming over the internet: http://www.3dsom.com/features/process.html ttp://www.3dsom.com/proexamples/index.html.
LO 3.1 Details Specifications • a) Input Images • Mat printing function to create calibration mats on an ordinary black and white printer. • Accepts up to 256 input images per project from digital cameras or scanners as JPEG, BMP or PNG files. • Fully automatic, robust camera calibration to identify arbitrary camera location and orientation. • Automatic background separation (masking) tool with compensation for shadows on the backdrop. • Manual mask editing tools at multiple image zooms. • Mask save and load via PNG for editing in an external editor (Adobe Photoshop, JASC Paint Shop Pro and others). • b) Wire frame Generation • Fast and accurate, patented geometry calculation algorithm based on silhouettes without any voxelisation errors. • Handles objects with holes and those composed of multiple separate parts generating one or more closed triangle meshes. • Interactive mesh decimation to reduce polygon count to required level. • Optional clip plane to remove any remaining stand geometry. • Editable synthetic silhouettes allow geometry to be refined from angles where images were not originally taken.
LO 3.1 Details Specifications • c) Texture Generation • Fully automatic texture tiling function to create a single texture map around the whole object. • User chosen texture map resolution up to 2048 pixels square. • Patented texture blending algorithms to reduce registration errors and produce crisp textures. • Tone correction option to compensate for exposure differences between images. • Manual alignment option for including underneath shots to texture all faces of the object. • Powerful, easy-to-use, seamless texture editing using your usual external image editor by painting on any view of the object. • d) Save and Export • Export final model to 3DSOM Viewer for immediate inclusion on web pages without need for browser plugins. We can also remove our branding on a per-model basis. • 3DSOM Viewer can display a background image behind the model as well as adding lighting, shadows and hotspots in a small redistributable Java applet. • Export to Shockwave for use in Macromedia Director 8.5 for creating interactive web content, and also as ready-to-use web page for use with popular Shockwave Player plugin. • Export to VRML for interchange with many 3D packages and also for viewing with VRML-enabled browsers. • Export to 3DS object for loading into 3D Studio Max and other 3D editing/animation packages. • All project information saved in one project file • Original images are not altered (can be read only) and left outside file to minimise project file size.
LO 3.1 Details Specifications e) System Requirements • 3DSOM runs under Windows XP (Home or Professional Editions) or Windows 2000. Although it is possible to run under a Windows emulator on a Macintosh, this is not recommended as intensive processing is required. • Recommended specs for a PC: • CPU x86 compatible, PC/AT compliant • Pentium 3 or 4 is preferable • 32-bit graphics card with OpenGL support • Monitor resolution 1024x768 minimum (small system fonts) • Physical RAM: 128MB minimum, 256MB recommended • Mouse and Keyboard
LO 3.2 Abstract VR WORX 2.5 • QuickTime Virtual Reality is an extension of the QuickTime technology developed by Apple Computer, Inc. that allows viewers to interactively explore and examine photo realistic, three-dimensional, virtual world. Unlike many other virtual reality systems, QuickTime VR does not require the viewer to wear goggles, a helmet or gloves. Instead, the viewer navigates in a virtual world using conventional computer input devices (such as the mouse, trackball, track pad or keyboard) to change the displayed image via the QuickTime VR movie controller. • QuickTime VR is quickly becoming one of the most important assets you can have, bringing a new level of interactivity and motion to web design and multimedia productions. The user can create interactive QuickTime VR movies quickly, simply and professionally, with any kind of camera: film, digital, video or created on the computer using a three-dimensional (3D) graphics package.
LO 3.2 Abstract VR WORX 2.5 A QuickTime VR movie contains all the date for a QuickTime VR virtual world. The movie contains a single scene, which is an aggression of one or more nodes. A node is a location in a virtual world which an object or panorama can be viewed. For panoramic nodes, the node's position is the centre point from which the panorama is viewed. Any number of nodes, objects, panoramas, linear movies or stills, can comprise a QuickTime VR Scene. The VR Worx™ is the award-winning suite of VR authoring tools for QuickTime™. The latest version, The VR Worx 2.5 is taking advantage of today’s revolutionary operating systems. Engineered for Mac OS X and Windows XP, with a new streamlined and simplified user interface, The VR Worx 2.5 delivers powerful technology along with fresh advancements to its famous feature/function set. The VR Worx 2.5 creates cylindrical panoramic movies, object movies and multi-node scenes (a.k.a. virtual tours), all in the QuickTime format. Version 2.5 has the ability to create an object movie, which has a panoramic movie as a moving background. And v2.5 has the capacity for transitions within a multi-node scene, like standard wipes, dissolves, explodes, and others, as well as actual linear video as a transition. The VR Worx 2.5 can construct multinode environments with cylindrical panoramas, cubic VRs, multi-row objects, absolute objects, objects with sound, still images and linear QuickTime movies (http://www.vrtoolbox.com/gallery.html).
LO 3.2 Details VR WORX 2.5 • New Features & Functions Include: • Streamlined and simplified User Interface for Macintosh & Windows • Live Scrolling, Live Window Resizing and Dialog Sheets • Application-wide Image Drag & Drop, including Document Proxy Icons • Integrated On-line Help • Intelligent Auto-configuration of Panoramas & Objects • Choice of Cylindrical or Linear input acquisition mode for Panoramas • Integrated Bridge to external image editors, like Photoshop™ • Zoom capability for images in Stitch & Blend panels • Drag & Nudge capability for positioning images in Stitch panel • User defined presets for quick composition of QuickTime movies • Specify alternate target sizes with estimated download times • Optimize media order for fast-start downloading • Auto-generate low res preview track from movie or external image file • Embed HTML tags and generate HTML "Starter Page" containing movie • Recompose existing Object, Panorama and Linear QuickTime movies • AppleScript & Windows Visual Basic Scripting enabled throughout • Improved handling of large images for Composition and Import/Export • Greatest feature parity between Mac & Windows of any previous version • Create Object Movie with Panoramic Background • Sound Support in Object Mode
LO 3.2 Details VR WORX 2.5 • Chroma-Key Background Mask • Frame Based Animation • Centering, Cropping, and De-Wobbling Effects • Integrated On-line Help • Application-wide Image Drag & Drop • Auto-configuration of Panoramas & Objects • Cylindrical or Linear input acquisition for Panoramas • Bridge to external image editors, like Photoshop™ • Improved handling of large images for Movie Composition and Import/Export, exceeding 16,000 pixels wide for source images and 30,000 pixels wide for imported or rendered panoramas • Transparent View mode for precise stitching • Over 250 Hot Spots per node • Recompose existing Objects, Panos and Linear QuickTime movies • Embed HTML tags & generate HTML Starter Page containing your movie • AppleScript & Visual Basic Scripting for Windows enabled throughout • Multinode Transitions, including linear video transitions • Scene Module accepts Panoramas, Cubic VRs, Objects, Still Images and Linear Movies as Nodes • Edit and Preview Multi-Node Scenes without rendering finished movie