Thursday, January 05, 2006

Virtual Nile Valley - Egypt and Sudan


I'm always interested in the use of technology to advance history education so I was quite interested in this project that was a joint effort between the Deutsches Archaeological Institute and the ART+COM AG Computer company:

Virtual Nile Valley - Egypt and Sudan: "The project's objectives are the computer-based, virtual presentation and reconstruction of selected Egyptian and Sudanese sites from different periods of their history in real time to enable the user to choose the point of view himself. The 3D reconstructions are supplemented by important information supplied in multimedia techniques. Preference is given to such sites which are or were excavated by the DAI.

The project is aimed on one hand at the public to implement and increase archaeological knowledge and to develop an awareness of the difficulties of archaeological disciplines. On the other hand it is aimed at the scientific community since it should be investigated whether and how VR can supplement archaeological work.

The project included the following Egyptian sites: the Early Dynastic royal cemetery as well as monuments from the Middle and New Kingdom at Abydos (ill..: Preliminary overview over the Cemetery of Umm el-Qaab, version: October 2002; ill.: the tomb of Qa'a during virtual reconstruction, version: October 2002 (about 3500-1200 BC) and the temple and selected tombs at Siwa; the town of Elephantine including the Early Dynastic fortress as well as the temples of Satet and Khnum (3. - 1. millennium BC) is in preparation. Information on the archaeological sites of Amarna and Giza was also collected.

In Sudan, the capital of the Kerma kingdom will be reconstructed in its classical period (ca. 1500-100 BC; ill.: Kerma - main temple, hut of the council and palaces, partial 3D-reconstruction, ill.: Kerma - main temple, hut of the council and palaces during excavation). In addition, the temples and pyramid fields of Gebel Barkal (ca. 1500-100 BC; ill.: Ruins of the temples of Napata), the royal cemetery of El Kurru (8. cent. BC), and Hamadab/Kabushiya, an urban settlement of the Meroitic period in the 1. cent. AD, were selected for virtual reconstruction and partially prepared for modelling (Jebel Barkal). "