Modelling, Interpretation and Alternate Representations: Visualization technology, Heritage Buildings & Coastal Threats.

Lead Research Organisation: Bangor University
Department Name: Sch of Computer Science

Abstract

All heritage interpretation is complex. It is often based on uncertain information, or information extrapolated from other sites. Sites may cover many periods or have had varying functions. Our approach will help heritage managers visualize and display different stages of their site's past (and present different versions of that past if desired). We will also produce models which allow the depiction of future trends by showing different possible outcomes from different scenarios. This approach reflects widely recognised gaps within visualization and presentation and its role in heritage science, as recognised by EPOCH - the European Network of Excellence in Open Cultural Heritage - and other bodies. It involves addressing considerable challenges within visualization research, which form the first phase of the network discussions.

The network aims to further develop heritage science interest within and beyond the Welsh-Irish sea area. It builds on best practice examples, develops new visualization approaches and applies these techniques to two distinct but important forms of heritage - threatened coastal archaeological sites and buildings. It will discuss modelling informed by maritime, environmental and archaeological knowledge and by knowledge of building preservation and management. It embraces multiple disciplines and a range of heritage organisations, including the National Museums of Wales and Ireland, the National Trust and English Heritage. Wider understanding of this approach will be aided by using a 'rich-media' demo - an interactive video, developed from the discussions - displayed on the network website and in other locations. It will be used in subsequent workshops, in discussions with stakeholders, and will enhance the public engagement. Subsequently the cluster will identify new research challenges through, and lead to the preparation of an 'agenda setting' report. Finally, a substantial grant proposal will be submitted.

Publications

10 25 50
 
Description The network grant brought together researchers from around the UK, plus some additional European researchers. The project focused on two distinct but important forms of heritage - threatened coastal archaeological sites and buildings. We ran 4 workshops on Heritage Visualization, Heritage modelling, visualization and multivocality, and virtual reality techniques for science and heritage.

We discovered that (1) new tools and techniques should be developed to allow presentation, interpretation and display of uncertainty. These tools need to take into consideration alternative viewpoints, multivocality, different tasks and alternative display methods. (2) That there are many different ways to present, render and view and interpret heritage data, and users have different skills, as such authorship tools need to allow non-ICT specialists to use digital assets. (3) There is a requirement to develop novel interface techniques for displaying heritage data.
Exploitation Route Digital Communication and ICT sectors can be empowered to develop the next generation of software that addresses alternative views and multivocality.

The work was taken forward and influenced the next AHRC project that was funded. Culture and Heritage communities can consider these results to plan for more interactive and accessible tools.
Sectors Digital/Communication/Information Technologies (including Software),Culture, Heritage, Museums and Collections

 
Description The networking helped to develop the consortiums for the next projects; working with Aberystwyth University and also with Manchester Metropolitan University.
First Year Of Impact 2010
Sector Digital/Communication/Information Technologies (including Software)
Impact Types Cultural

 
Description A collaborative Bangor & Oxford University geophysical survey project of Iron Age settlements in the Corwen area (funded by UWPCRC and Denbigh County Council/Heather and Hillforts project). 
Organisation Bangor University
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution Information taken from Final Report
 
Description A collaborative Bangor & Oxford University geophysical survey project of Iron Age settlements in the Corwen area (funded by UWPCRC and Denbigh County Council/Heather and Hillforts project). 
Organisation University of Oxford
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution Information taken from Final Report
 
Description Bangor University has established strong international links, with negotiations under way with the new Ludwig Boltzmann Institute for Archaeological Visualization and Geophysics. 
Organisation Bangor University
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution Information taken from Final Report
 
Description Establishing a GIS of late prehistoric and early historic settlement in North-West Wales (funded by University of Wales Publications and Collaborative Research Committee). 
Organisation University of Wales
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution Information taken from Final Report
 
Description Participants in Bangor, Swansea Uni in History and Computer Sciences departments, the Uni of Glamorgan Computer Sciences department, & the RCAHMW submitted a large research grant application. 
Organisation Royal Commission on Ancient and Historic Monuments of Wales
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Public 
PI Contribution Information taken from Final Report
 
Description Two-day Workshop Heritage Visualizations & Technologies (Feb 19-20, 2009) organised by grant 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Type Of Presentation workshop facilitator
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact 7 talks; discussion and break out sessions discussed the challenges of ; site visit to National Trust's archaeological site (Dinas Dinlle, Gwynedd). Questions including: What computational environment is suitable for alternate scenario visualization? What functionality is required to visualize and interact with alternates? What interaction capability is required (e.g. to allow comparison or query visualizations and details); An installation? What equipment is optimum - the use of tactile interfaces, or handheld devices such as using haptic devices,

Many impacts, around starting of networking. Specifically we know about (1) Bangor Univ Computer Science School starting to develop collaboration with Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Wales (and to investigate additional collaborations); (2) Bangor Univ. discussing with National Trust for further collaboration.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2009
URL http://heritage.cs.bangor.ac.uk/programme/event1.htm
 
Description Two-day Workshop on Heritage Modelling and Visualization (Heritage Buildings & multivocality), 9-10 July 2009 St Fagans: National History Museum 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Type Of Presentation workshop facilitator
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Discussion of issues of interest/concern to site managers and site visit. Discussion of current best practise visualization projects, application of modelling and visualization approaches. Development of new research questions.

The workshop generated much discussion and attendees wanted to know more; they were calling for more research in this area; and to look for follow-on funding, especially looking at alternative representations.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2009
URL http://heritage.cs.bangor.ac.uk/programme/event3.htm
 
Description Two-day workshop , Heritage Modelling and Visualization (Coastal sites & Multivocality) May 7-8 2009, organised by the funding 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Type Of Presentation workshop facilitator
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact 7 presentations, talks by national speakers, including Alan Chalmers, Warwick Management Group, Warwick University; and Gareth Beale, Leif Isaksen (Southampton University). Questions included: What computational environment is suitable for alternate scenario visualization? What functionality is required to visualize and interact with alternates? What interaction capability is required. An installation? What equipment is optimum - the use of tactile interfaces, or handheld devices such as using haptic devices.

Collaborations and networking. Many networks and collaborations made between participants; we know of discussions from Warwick Management Group to Bangor University, and Discussions between Southampton University and Bangor.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2009
URL http://heritage.cs.bangor.ac.uk/programme/event2.htm
 
Description Virtual Heritage 2010 - A joint "Science & Heritage Cluster" and VRLink workshop. Bringing together Industry, Charities and Institutions to discuss Virtual Reality techniques and ideas for Science and Heritage applications. 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Type Of Presentation workshop facilitator
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact 15 presentations were made by speakers from UK academia, trusts and companies. E.g., Jenny Dickinson, Technium Cast; Dyfan Searell, Coleg Menai; Douglas Cawthorne, De Montfort Univ.,; Drew Baker, Kings College; Dewi Jones, Dewi Jones Associates. Discussions over scanning devices; requirements for remote scanning; discussion over future funding.

Networking and discussions over future funding; Many impacts for collaborations and start of new ventures; we know of networking between Dr Roberts and Dr Cawthorne.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2010
URL http://heritage.cs.bangor.ac.uk/programme/event4.htm