CHICAGO—(BUSINESS WIRE)—August 4, 2008—
A significantly enhanced version of Rome Reborn will make its public
debut at SIGGRAPH 2008 this August in Los Angeles. It is one of several
cutting-edge New Tech Demos that exemplifies how the past invigorates
the future of computer graphics and interactive techniques. Considered
the largest virtual reconstruction, cultural heritage, and digital
archaeology project to date, Rome Reborn is an international
collaboration designed to create an interactive 3D digital model that
illustrates the urban development of ancient Rome.
Rome Reborn showcases new approaches for exhibiting historical findings
in museums, classrooms, and on the Internet. Approximately 7,000
buildings recapture Rome at the peak of its glory in 320 AD, at the time
of Constantine the Great. The project opens new channels for education,
collaboration between scholars, and communication of archaeology to the
“Rome Reborn is re-inventing the way we
explore, understand, and celebrate our past by bringing together
technologies that invigorate and define the future of computer graphics
and interactive techniques,” said Cole
Krumbholz, SIGGRAPH 2008 Associate Producer of Encounters. “This
exhibit demonstrates the impact modern computer graphics is having on
other fields, such as archeology and the humanities.”
In real time, visitors to the exhibit will be able to explore the
ancient city landscape and its numerous buildings and immerse themselves
in the reconstructed 3D models of ancient Roman architecture, rendered
Several industry and academic partners have collaborated to create Rome
Reborn. These include IATH, IBM, Illustrious, mental images, Past
Perfect Productions Srl., Procedural Inc., the Politecnico di Milano,
UCLA, and Mersive Technologies - each one contributing creative content
with computer graphics technologies that combine to deliver interactive
experiences of ancient Rome.
The Institute for Advanced
Technology in the Humanities (IATH) (
at the University of Virginia is a world leader in the field of
digital humanities and has been the lead developer of the Rome Reborn
project since 2004.
Cell Processor Technology has created a highly interactive way to
experience ancient Rome, resulting in an improved frame rate,
resolution, and illumination of the model over the first version of
the Rome Reborn application.
is a UK-based company specializing in three-dimensional sound, and
they have worked with IATH to create videos of everyday life in
ancient Rome in order to enhance the Rome Reborn model.
RealityServer®, is a server-based 3D
application and web services platform that enables a completely
interactive experience with massive 3D models like ancient Rome, in
real time on the Internet.
Perfect Productions Srl. (
a company based in Rome, Italy, reconstructs archaeological and
historical sites from around the globe using scientific research and
cutting-edge virtual reality techniques, owns exclusive worldwide
commercial rights to the Rome Reborn model, and has partnered the
development of the project.
Ducati Myers Srl. and the University of Bologna have developed
a mobile virtual reality device called the TimeMachineTM
that uses location tracking to visualize the 3D Rome Reborn model onto
real world scenery. Adapted for SIGGRAPH by Fraunhofer Institut IGD
and ArtResearch SRL., this technology enables tourists to visit the
modern-day Roman ruins and experience the ancient city as it appeared
during its peak in 320 AD.
Procedural Inc. (
an ETH spin-off company and the developer of the recently launched
CityEngine® software that allows for the
fastest creation of large-scale urban environments such as the more
than 7,000 buildings automatically generated in Rome Reborn.
The Politecnico di Milano (
made important contributions in digitizing the famous “Plastico
di Roma Antica,” a 1:250 physical model of
the ancient city created over a 30 year period for a museum in Rome.
The digitized physical model served as the point of departure for the
Rome Reborn project.
contributed highly detailed models of more than 30 sites in ancient
Rome, including the Colosseum and the Roman Forum.
Mersive Technologies (
a leader in the creation of ultra definition (UD) displays, will make
visitors feel as though they are actually stepping into ancient Rome
through pixel-perfect images showcased on its 27 million pixel ultra
definition display that measures 25' 5" wide by 10' 9" tall by 36"
deep (24' 5" x 8' 7" viewable screen) with a resolution 14x greater