by Martin Derr and David Arnold

ICTs’ use for Cultural Heritage has been growing very fast as part of the explosion in digital arts and humanities research driven by both public interest in heritage and the opportunity to enhance intellectual enquiry for Arts and Humanities researchers. Societal interest is at many levels from heritage themes in entertainment, including tourism and computer games, to political interest in heritage and its affect on our sense of identity and citizenship. Like education and health, heritage is personal, though influenced by the collective through commonalities in personal experiences.

by Patrick Reuter, Nicolas Mellado, Xavier Granier, Isabelle Hairy, Robert Vergnieux and Nadine Couture

The SeARCH research project (Semi-automatic 3D Acquisition and Reassembly of Cultural Heritage) brings together archeologists and computer scientists with one unique objective: the virtual reassembly of broken artifacts, and especially the broken statues that were surrounding the lighthouse of Alexandria. The gathering of researchers of these two fundamentally different scientific origins makes it possible to combine expert archeological high-level knowledge with the power of computer graphic visualization techniques and geometry p rocessing algorithms. The integration of both disciplines is achieved by designing efficient human-computer interaction techniques that use semi-automatic geometry-driven acquisition, visualization, and reassembly techniques.

by Thomas Schiffer, Christoph Schinko, Torsten Ullrich and Dieter W. Fellner

The current methods of describing the shape of three-dimensional objects can be classified into two groups: composition of primitives and procedural description. As a 3D acquisition device simply returns an agglomeration of elementary objects (eg a laser scanner returns points) a real-world data set is always a – more or less noisy – composition of primitives. A generative model, on the other hand, describes an ideal object rather than a real one. Owing to this abstract view of an object, generative techniques are often used to describe objects semantically. Consequently, generative models, rather than being a replacement for established geometry descriptions (based on points, triangles, etc.), offer a sensible, semantic enrichment.

by Katerina Tzompanaki, Martin Doerr, Maria Theodoridou and Sven Havemann

The systematic large-scale production of digital scientific objects, such as 3D models, requires much more infrastructure than a classical digital archive connected to a workflow manager. The size of the data to be handled, the distribution of expertise, acquisition and production sites, and the complexity of the processes involved require an innovative integrated environment that combines content management and information retrieval (IR) services with a centralized knowledge management in order to monitor, manage and document processes and products in a flexible manner.

by Elena Console, Anna Tonazzini and Fabio Bruno

Extracting and archiving information from digital images of documents is one of the goals of the project AMMIRA (multispectral acquisition, enhancing, indexing and retrieval of artifacts), led by Tea-Sas, a service firm based in Catanzaro, Italy, with the collaboration of two Italian research teams, the Institute of Information Science and Technologies of CNR in Pisa, and the Department of Mechanical Engineering of the University of Calabria in Cosenza. AMMIRA is supported by European funding, through the Italian regional program for integrated support to enterprises.

by Martin Hecher, Robert Möstl, Eva Eggeling, Christian Derler and Dieter W. Fellner

Cultural heritage institutions such as galleries, museums and libraries increasingly use digital media to present artifacts to their audience and enable them to immerse themselves in a cultural virtual world. With the application eXhibition:editor3D, museum curators and editors have a software tool at hand to interactively plan and visualize exhibitions. The software is running on standard PCs as well as multi-touch devices, which allow a user to utilize intuitive gestures for positioning exhibition objects. Furthermore, multi-touch technology offers the integration of collaborative work into a decision making process.

by Giuseppe Amato, Fabrizio Falchi and Paolo Bolettieri

VISITO Tuscany (VIsual Support to Interactive TOurism in Tuscany) is a research project which investigates techniques for producing an interactive guide, accessible via smartphone, for tourists visiting cities of art. The system applies image analysis and content recognition techniques to recognize photographed monuments. The user just has to take a picture of a tourist landmark to obtain pertinent information on his or her smartphone.

by Stanislav Mikeš, Michal Haindl and Radek Holub

Scientists at Institute of Information Theory and Automation (UTIA), Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic have developed a detailed virtual model of the Department of Modern Art of the National Gallery in Prague. This impressive seven-storey building holds the gallery’s collection of contemporary images, drawings and statues as well as several temporary exhibitions. This virtual model serves as a comprehensive 3D information system with navigation support for visitors and as an interactive tool for exhibition designers and curators. Within the comfort of their own home, visitors can experience an animated online thematic visit to their selected works of art and also print a map with a proposed personalized route.

by Xenophon Zabulis, Dimitrios Grammenos, Antonis A. Argyros, Michalis Sifakis and Constantine Stephanidis

Forget all about the traditional "Do Not Touch" museum rule! In 2010, the Institute of Computer Science of the Foundation for Research and Technology – Hellas (ICS-FORTH) and the Archaeological Museum of Thessaloniki (AMTh) collaborated in the creation of a special exhibition of prototypical interactive systems with subjects drawn from ancient Macedonia, named "Macedonia from fragments to pixels" (see link below). The exhibition is hosted by the AMTh at its premises and is open to the general public.

by Wojciech Jaworski

A vast amount of knowledge is contained in large collections of unstructured or weakly structured text documents, which started to emerge soon after the discovery of writing. We develop a methodology, which allows users to seek not only for information localized in specific documents but also knowledge spread across an entire document collection.

by Verónica Romero, Alejandro Héctor Toselli, Enrqiue Vidal and Joan Andreu Sánchez

A multimodal interactive approach for transcription of ancient documents is proposed. In this approach, user’s feedback directly facilitates improvements to system accuracy while multimodality increases system ergonomy and user acceptability.

by Lenz Furrer and Martin Volk

In order to improve optical character recognition (OCR) quality in texts originally typeset in Gothic script, an automatic correction system can be built to be highly specialized for the given text. The approach includes external dictionary resources as well as information derived from the text itself.

by Eoin Kilfeather

Cultural meaning does not reside in individual objects but in the patterns of knowledge and events, belief and thought that link them to each other and to the observer. This is why narrative is so important to the communication of, and meaningful understanding, of culture.

by Ralf Klamma and Yiwei Cao

Digital multimedia, web and mobile technologies bring new experiences to museums and cultural heritage management. Within the German-Greek project of non-linear digital storytelling for the battleship “G. Averof”, advanced storytelling approaches were applied to the museum with a large multimedia archive on the historic battleship.

by Joachim Jung, Rainer Simon and Bernhard Haslhofer

Annotations have been a means of scholarly communication and an invaluable research tool for centuries. The Open Source YUMA Universal Media Annotator takes this paradigm and makes it available for the collaborative annotation of online media resources. The YUMA suite of tools can currently be used for image, map, audio and video annotation. It is designed to be integrated into any host environment (like a digital library portal or an online media collection) and enables mash-ups across such environments by exposing annotation data according to the Linked Data principles. Linked Data is also the basis for one of YUMA’s unique features: Semantic Tagging. A semi-automatic mechanism provides users with tag suggestions that can be used to effortlessly augment annotations with structured context information, eg about places, persons of interest or historical periods.

by Richard Wetzel

Tidy City is a location-based scavenger hunt game for Android phones which allows everybody to create and publish their own content. During the game, players have to solve riddles that deal with historic or current topics and elements of the city. This enables players to learn about the past and present while exploring the city.

by Nicola Aloia, Cesare Concordia, Anne van Gerwen, Carlo Meghini and N. Zeni

In its 2011-2015 Strategic Plan, Europeana announced User Engagement, ie new ways for end users to participate in cultural heritage, to be one of the primary tracks by which the organization will deliver value. Europeana intends to enhance the user experience and offer services that allow users to interact and participate.

by Jacco van Ossenbruggen

Professional users in the heritage domain have started to deploy data published on the Web: data that often comes in different forms, from different sources and is controlled by different organizations. In addition to the data integration problems in the back end, CWI is also studying the user interface challenges in the front end.

by Diego Ceccarelli, Sergiu Gordea, Claudio Lucchese, Franco Maria Nardini, Raffaele Perego and Gabriele Tolomei

Europeana is a strategic project funded by the European Commission with the goal of making Europe's cultural and scientific heritage accessible to the public. ASSETS is a two-year Best Practice Network co-funded by the CIP PSP Programme to improve performance, accessibility and usability of the Europeana search engine. Here we present a characterization of the Europeana logs by showing statistics on common behavioural patterns of the Europeana users.

by Kai Stalmann, Marion Borowski and Sven Becker

Providing users with information and knowledge about cultural heritage objects has been a core business of libraries, museums, archives, and other institutions for centuries. Accessing the information, however, has always been limited to those who literally step through the portals of these elevated places of acquired knowledge. Digitizing and publishing of digitized objects to the web brings knowledge to a much broader audience. It is even conceivable that cultural heritage might once again play a significant role in society, providing it is easy enough to explore, openly accessible and applicable to range of purposes.

by Jérôme Barthélemy

The GAMELAN project is devoted to the development of an environment for management and archival of digital audio and music (in French, Gamelan stands for "Gestion et Archivage de la Musique Et de L'Audio Numérique"). It will provide an intelligent archival system for music, based on the history and the semantics of the production.

by Mercè López, Oriol Almirall and Sergi Fernández

Pat.mapa is an ambitious project that presents the Catalan cultural heritage on the Internet in an integrated and innovative format. The project addresses the semantic web challenge of aggregating cross-domain cultural heritage content into a semantically rich intelligent system. Pat.mapa is an interdisciplinary project that for the first time in the Catalan area, implements the principles of linked data, ontologies and complex data visualization on cultural heritage content.

by Barbara Zitová, Miroslav Beneš and Janka Hradilová

Nephele is a comprehensive information system for processing and archiving data produced in the process of art conservation.
The benefits of using digital image processing in the area of cultural heritage were identified many years ago. New sensors and modern techniques are employed in the study and in conservation of old, and often damaged, artworks. The Nephele project introduced here, focuses on material analysis research and addresses the key issue of the art conservation - identification of the painting materials used.

by Umberto Maniscalco and Giovanni Pilato

Soft sensors are innovative tools for the acquisition of measurements in complex experimental conditions. We present a set of soft sensors designed for the spatial measurement forecasting of environmental atmospheric parameters in order to solve the problem of non-invasive monitoring of archaeological sites.

by Fabrizio Clarelli, Barbara De Filippo, and Roberto Natalini

Air pollution is one of the most serious causes of degradation in bronze monuments and artifacts; in particular, sulphur dioxide (SO2) is one of the main causes of bronze disease. Mathematicians have now begun to model this kind of problem in order to assist the protection and restoration of bronze artifacts. In our research, we have introduced a free boundary model which describes the growth of corrosion on the surface of bronze monuments under SO2 aggression, quantifying the influence of different environmental factors such as concentration of pollutants, but also humidity and temperature.

Next issue: April 2021
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