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Lost LABYRINTH Of Egypt Scanned

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Author Topic: Lost LABYRINTH Of Egypt Scanned  (Read 8853 times)
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« Reply #45 on: September 30, 2008, 08:42:12 pm »

5 Discussion

In this project, we proposed a case study for distributing an online resource of an ancient Egyptian site. In particular, we constructed 2 versions of VR model of the Hawara Labyrinth and presented its probable forms in 3D. The first reconstruction of the Labyrinth is based on a drawing by Petrie, and the second based on parallels from other mortuary temples of Pharaonic times as well as descriptions by classical authors. The models were complemented by Web interface where information relevant to the model and other data on artefacts were provided.

We may argue that the Petrie model looks "less Egyptian" in our contemporary interpretation, and that the second version seems to more accurate. However, both examples retain the right to be claimed as the correct reconstruction of the Labyrinth, for we do not and probably would never know for sure, what it really was like.

The project provides a generic approach in several different areas.

This project opens the door to exploration of spaces that have been lost and their structure unknown. Unlike more complex design tools, VR solution provides a range of possible options for combining existing artefacts and reconstructing entire sites from existing artefactual evidence. This approach is not only be useful to the experts who seek a modelling tool for their field of study, but is also useful to the wider public who are potentially interested in the appearance of ancient sites.
The temporal aspect of this research is also important, in that it enables us to build models of different periods. This could help in investigating transitional shifts associated with specific sites, especially when building a model of an archaeological site that has undergone transitions in its physical form as well as its culture.

From the museum-studies point of view, the project contributes by providing insight into how museums can use the full potential of web-based technologies to provide its resource in completely different modes of understanding and interpreting collections. There is also the potential in this approach to display and combine items from different collections in the same reproductions or reconstructions, and to explore different arrangements and interpretations of the same sets of artefacts.

In terms of our future output, we may further employ the potentials of VR space by developing a flexible and dynamic modelling system where users can visualise and explore interactively as they wish. The use of the virtual environment as a flexible, dynamic space is highly significant for it is fundamentally applicable to many other fields. In fact, enabling users to actively interact with the objects and arrange them in a virtual space that best suits their imagination, while moving the objects around and substituting them with new ones, is a radical challenge to the traditional control of exhibitions and information by curators.

We are currently building on the experience gained through this case study and are creating online learning and teaching resource under a three-year research project scheme.
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