My first and probably most important takeaway at DigiDoc 2011 is that there is a very large market for digital heritage and documentation in Europe and perhaps other countries outside the USA. In Germany they regularly host heritage fairs to promote this market.
The First Minister of Scotland, Rt. Hon. Alex Salmon opened the conference and spent some time with a small group of us prior to the opening. He is the number one elected official in Scotland. He is 110% behind the work being done by Historic Scotland and the Glasgow School of Design.
The Minister sees digital heritage as sending an important message to the world that Scotland is a leader in this field and that tourists should travel to Scotland for the cultural heritage.
The presentations were outstanding. Here is just a sampling – Brian Mathews from Autodesk provided a tremendous overview of the impact of 3D; Greg Downing from xRez Studio described his use of gigapixel technology to create the world’s largest high definition photo; and Seb Jouan from Arup explained how he is working with Doug Pritchard to combine 3D laser scanning with acoustic design principles to create the world’s first “virtual performing arts center”, which he can make to sound and look like any hall in the world.
I will provide more details, but in delivering my presentation and discussing it with a number of people in the audience I realized that digital heritage preservation is a very unique application for 3D laser scanning. It’s much more about the human interaction than it is about geometric accuracy.