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Images and Artefacts of the Ancient World$
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Alan K. Bowman and Michael Brady

Print publication date: 2005

Print ISBN-13: 9780197262962

Published to British Academy Scholarship Online: January 2012

DOI: 10.5871/bacad/9780197262962.001.0001

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Virtual Reality, Relative Accuracy: Modelling Architecture and Sculpture with VRML

Virtual Reality, Relative Accuracy: Modelling Architecture and Sculpture with VRML

(p.44) (p.45) Chapter 5 Virtual Reality, Relative Accuracy: Modelling Architecture and Sculpture with VRML
Images and Artefacts of the Ancient World

Michael Greenhalgh

British Academy

This chapter evaluates current possibilities for the attainment of a realistic context over the web by attempting to match the basic requirements of art history scholarship and teaching against what is currently offered and what can be expected in the future. It surveys some ongoing research in the field from the perspective of an observer and a user. The first section of the chapter discusses virtual reality modelling language (VRML) and describes a project of the Supercomputer Group at the Australian National University. This project aimed to model, using VRML, the Buddhist stupa at Borobudur. The chapter also discusses a second project which deals with the Piazza de Popolo at Rome and the reasons why this project did not employ VMRL. The second section of the chapter examines some other ways in which an ordinary lecturer may use various simple technologies to conjure context, and with more flexibility, detail and accuracy that VRML can ever achieve.

Keywords:   realistic context, web, virtual reality modelling language, Supercomputer Group, VRML, Buddhist stupa, Piazza de Popolo, simple technologies

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