María-Eugenia POLO | Mª DE LOS REYES DE SOTO | Guadalupe DURÁN-DOMÍNGUEZ | Carlos J. MORÁN
(University of Extremadura and Institute of Archaeology of Mérida, Mérida, Spain)

Keywords: Virtual documentation, Archaeological context, Archaeological database

Is it possible to make the general public understand the archaeological objects using only one virtual tool? The use of knowledge network helps us to disseminate the content and allows the access to the creation and the distribution of other typology of image which were previously restricted to a just few people. In this way, we replace the analog image of the material heritage with its digital version, assuming that it is the best approach to achieve a more comprehensive dissemination of information, without asking ourselves if we have marginalized the archaeological context. In general, we use virtual technology to surprise, without really reflecting on understanding the object, with all its historical memory. The purpose of this approach is to compare these working methods from both analog and virtual points of view considering some problems such as the cost of modelling, the expenditure of time or the need of an expert user to manage the virtual tools. One of the most important aspect of this approach will be to analyse what we contribute regarding the purely analog approach or to assess if these digital tools distract us from the historical understanding of the object. For this reason, the virtual documentation will include all interactive information of the object, managed from a wiki (using Wikidot – -), including bibliography, links to archaeological database, high resolution photography (shown in – and 3D models of the archaeological objects obtained from both 3D scanner and digital photography by means of the Image-Based Modelling system (shown in – -). In conclusion, we consider that the traditional analog information of these objects can and should be included in this virtual proposal. Some questions should be answered as why these tools have been chosen, what the scope of these tools is, and how many objects can be presented in this way when the process of generating 3D models become computational routine.

Relevance for the conference: We propose a set of tools for virtual documentation and dissemination of the information of the archaeological object taking into account the traditional analog information of the object.
Relevance for the session: We propose to use virtual tools and networks to integrate the analog and virtual perspectives of the archaeological object.
Innovation: Using wikidot, 3D scanning, image-based modelling, database, Sketchfab and Flickr to document the archaeological object including the historical understanding of the object.

  • Polo M. E., Vaquero J. M., Felicísimo A. M. 2017. Metric Properties of Sundials using 3-D Models from Digital Photography. Historical Archaeology 51 (4) 557-562.