Thursday, 14 February 2013

Only 5 days to go!

Final preperations are underway for next week, with the team busy making up delegate packs and name badges! For those of you coming along, registration will be open from 9am on the Wednesday morning in the Shire Hall, where tea and coffee will be available alongside our range of stands and exhibitions. We look forward to seeing you all there!

Friday, 8 February 2013

MonmouthpediA - A local project with global interest or 'The coolest project of 2012'

MonmouthpediA is a local innovations project which has grown quickly to global interest, being cited as 'the coolest project of 2012' by the wikipedian community. Conceived by a Monmouth resident, the project aims to cover every single notable place, person, artefact, plant, animal and othe things in Monmouth town in as many languages as possible, with a special focus on the Welsh language. Jointly co-created and funded by Monmouthshire County Council and wikimedia UK, the former has also funded the free town-wide Wi-Fi for the project - the first in Wales!

Mike Booth of The Shire Hall, Monmouth County Council and Joanna Goodwin, Digital Communities Co-ordinator, CMC2 will be talking about how the project was conceived and delivered, the impact it has had and the challenges it has brought.

For the full abstract click here.

Wednesday, 6 February 2013

Virtual Exploration: Gigapixel photography

Greg Downing of xRez Studios in Santa Monica will be joining Digital Past 2013 via live streaming on Wednesday 20th February! This is an exciting first for the conference, and allows us to bring specialist speakers from across the world to the DP audience without costing the earth (financially or environmentally!).

xRez studio image 

Greg will be presenting about his pioneering work in bringing the field of gigapixel photography from the world of academia, to an affordable and easy to use technique benefiting a wide range of applications and markets. In contrast to normal panaromic photography, which involves stiching together relatively few standard resolution images together, gigapixel photography takes multiple photographs which can be up to 300,000 pixels in width, stitching them together to form an image with an enoromus amount of detail, allowing unsurpassed online viewing and exploration. For more information and case studies of Greg's work go to the xRez Studio website.

Friday, 1 February 2013

Registration closes Friday 8th February!

Registration for the Digital Past 2013 conference closes next Friday and with 135 booked so far, available spaces are limited. With 10 keynote papers, 8 session papers,and 4 seminars, together with a range of practical workshops and trade stands it should be a fantastic couple of days. Booking forms can be found at on the RCAHMW website!

Wednesday, 30 January 2013

The Zooniverse - working with 750,000 volunteers!

The Zooniverse is home to the internet's largest, most popular and most successful citizen science projects. Beginning with a single project, Galaxy Zoo, in 2007 the website now allows users to actively participate in a wide range of ongoing projects in the sciences and humanities including mapping moon craters, transcribing weather observations and catagorizing whale sounds. There has been an overwhelming response from the public, with over 780,000 volunteers now contributing.

Dr Chris Lintott, director of The Zooniverse project, researcher at the Department of Physics,University of Oxford, and co-presenter of The Sky at Night, will be presenting at Digital Past 2013 on the challenges of leading a crowd-sourcing project of such scale and the advantages that can be gained. These include:

  • The ability to cope with extremely large data set by providing many persons-years worth of classification
  • The ability to gather multiple independent interactions with the data, providing quantative estimates of error
  • large and powerful training sets for machine learning approaches to classification problems
  • By exposing data to large numbers of users there is a far higher chance of serendipitous discovery
  • Involving volunteers directly in the process of research provides an extremely powerful tool for both formal and informal education.
Chris will also be talking about Zoouniverse's latest project which is being carried out in partnership with the People's Collection Wales, the aim of which is to transcribe all place names from the 2nd edition Ordnance Survey mapping for Wales.

Workshops, walks and much more...

There will be a diverse range of hand-on workshops and digital demonstrations again at this years Digital Past. Thursday morning offers the opportunity to get to grips with LiDAR, laser scanning or Unmanned Aerial Vehicles in hands-on workshops, learn about audio-trails and latest developments of the Peoples Collection Wales and much more.

90 minute workshops
  • An Introduction to LiDAR for Beginners - Dr Oliver Davis of the Royal Commission will take people, step by step, through the process of loading, viewing and basic manipulation of LiDAR data.
  • STELLAR - Ceri Binding of the University of Glamorgan will lead a workshop to explain the technologies and demonstrate new tools for non-specialist users to map and extract their own archaeological datasets. 
  • Unmanned Aerial Vehicles - Peter Holland and Jared Pogmore from Korec will be demonstrating UAV's and dicussing their use for heritage sites.
  • Tech on the Trail: Monmouthpedia - Michael Booth of Monmouth CC will lead a walk around the town, showing the QR trail and discussing the practical pro's and cons' of the Monmouthpedia project.
40 minute workshops

  • Terrestrial laser scanning - Paul Burrows from Leica Geosystems will give a hands on demonstration of laser scanning a building, looking at downloading data and discussing the advantages and outputs of point cloud data.
  • Heritage Lottery Funding - Stepehn Barlow will discuss the range of funding streams available from the HLF for heritage projects, focusing particularly on their new policy for making content digitally available.
  • People's Collection Wales - Tom Pert of the Royal Commission and Carys Morgan, National Library Wales, will be giving updates on the Peoples Collection and demonstrating how to make your data accessiable via the PCW website.
  •  Audiotrails - Dan Boys of Audio Trails Ltd will lead people step by step through the process of commissioning audio trails and e-trails.
Full timetable

Friday, 25 January 2013

Rediscovering the lost city of Clonmacnoise

Located at the ancient cross roads  of Ireland, where the east-west running 'Eiscir Riada' meets the North-South River Shannon, Clonmacnoise can be claimed as Ireland first city. Established as a monastery by St Ciaran in the 7th century, a settlement grew up whicih reached its height between the 9th and 12th centuries, but was subsequent crushed by Cromwellian forces in the 16th century.

RealSIM have created a 3D animation recreating this lost city, and have since created a a GPS guided historical environment app which has been launched on the app store.

Gavin Duffy will discuss the challenges and lessons learnt during the project including:
  • Reconstructing an environmet with minimal archaeological evidence
  • the process of compiling a content and process heavy environment onto a small computing device
  • the user design process
  • The commercial viability of this type of app

 Click for the full abstract.