Data Management and Communication
Behaviours, Interactions and Affordances in Virtual Archaeology
by Maurizio Forte and Sofia Pescarin
The paper focuses on virtual reality applications, both online and offline, intended as advanced and complex systems that in the future could respond to new requirements for more accessible, open and shared information. Together with these considerations two approaches to the concept of ‘intellectual transparency’ are presented, namely transparency as interactivity and transparency as open software. The open source approach is proposed as a resilient and sustainable model for heritage research. Data transparency, defined as open and dynamic interaction with models, could transform, in an efficient way, shared access to information. Examples are provided, mainly drawn from the experience of the VHLab team at CNR-ITABC, in particular the Appia Antica, Esaro Cultural District and Flaminia Projects. Finally, possible solutions that could be developed in the near future as technological tools for cultural communication are presented, such as virtual communities, 3D repositories, and 3D shared and open, web-based working environments.
The order of illustrations below follows the book (please note the distinction between figures and plates).
Plate 16.1 Cybernetic map of the Castiglion Fiorentino Museum by Eva Pietroni. Reproduced courtesy of Eva Pietroni, CNR ITABC.
Plate 16.2 Virtual archaeological reconstruction of the House of Livia in Rome where every artefact has affordances such as Space, Time, Use, Type and Similarity assigned. Affordances may be activated and examined by the users as they interact with the model.
Figure 16.1 Example of cognitive anakyklosis. Diagram mapping the visitor’s experience of the Scrovegni Chapel in Padua and its multimedia room. Compare with drawings by M.C. Escher where everything is inside but also outside
Plate 16.3 Virtual reconstruction of the archaeological townscape of Bologna in Roman times (top); archaeological reconstruction of the Certosa area in Bologna in Etruscan times (middle); virtual reconstruction of the archaeological landscape of the Roman Via Flaminia and the House of Livia, Rome.
Figure 16.2 VR system for Bologna. It includes Roman DEM, bibliography, didactic models, 3D navigation and other resources
Plate 16.4 House of Centenarius Project, Pompeii. Different stages of the real-time navigation and possible interactions. Images courtesy of the Department of Archaeology at the University of Bologna and CINECA
Figure 16.3 Certosa Virtual Museum Project. Connection between models and data related to events and people, stored in an online database.
Figure 16.4 Delta Po Project. Analysis of the archaeological finds and a comparison with the hypothetical virtual reconstruction
Figure 16.5 Movie shown within the virtual space.
Figure 16.6 Virtual encounter with historical characters inside Sant’Urbano’s
Figure 16.7 Via Appia Project. From GIS to 3D navigation and interaction on the web (top). 3D dynamic offline environment for landscape reconstruction and 3D data published online (bottom).