Dominik MASCHEK / Michael SCHNEYDER / Marcel TSCHANNERL
(Liv|in´ Past, Vienna, Austria)
Outline: Showing the high significance of well converted digital 3D modelling for archaeological research and its demand to find, survey and preserve historic structures for the future.
In recent years the importance of computer technology used in archaeological surveys has rapidly increased. Today there are numerous ways of “digital” support for the work of an archaeologist, either to collect and organize the outcome of daily fieldwork or to summarize, evaluate and present all the results obtained during the whole project. The virtual 3D reconstruction, as it is meant here, is now one of those methods which fruitfully can be implemented for both purposes. Although there are a lot of undisputed benefits of such digital work also dangers connected to this development exist.
Due to the fact that it is pretty easy to rebuild objects virtually without much effort even people and companies with no primarily scientific approach or archaeological background are working on reconstructions. But to a major part every model is based on compromises and assumptions which need to be permanently reviewed by experts. This is necessary because 3D reconstructions mainly aim to look extremely realistic. So these models can be easily misunderstood as „resurrected“ reality, not only by laymen but also by scientists. Therefore there should be certain obligations to build the models on a scientific basement as well as to state that what is shown is only one out of numerous possible interpretations of the project’s “historic look”. But beside the critisism of what could be done wrong during the creation of such a model also some of the benefits which arise out of an interdisciplinary synergy between artists and scientists should be mentioned. Foremost, working on 3D models gives us the chance to try out different ways of interpretion without doing any harm to the original. New or renewed results could be implemented with a few mouse-clicks and mistakes could be easliy erased. So there is a high significance of well converted digital 3D modelling for archaeological research and its demand to find, survey and preserve historic structures for the future.
Keywords: 3D-Modeling, benefits and dangers