From the Depths of Plymouth Sound to the Highest Tors on Dartmoor

Gisbert Kapp Building - NG16, University of Birmingham
Thursday 25 October 2018 (17:00-18:00)

Examples of VR, AR and UxV Digital Heritage Survey Projects

For the past 12 years, the University of Birmingham’s Human Interface Technologies Team has been developing important examples of Digital Heritage in the West Country, building on early projects that were originally designed to deliver scenes of virtual nature to hospitalised patients and care home residents.  From long-abandoned railway lines to granite quarries of national importance; and from wrecksites in Plymouth Sound spanning nearly 200 years, to some of the goals and aspirations for the Virtual and Augmented Reality Mayflower project in 2020, the 400th anniversary of the sailing of the Pilgrims from England to the New World.  This presentation will describe and demonstrate just some of the highlights of 12 years of making the invisible visible in one of the most historic regions of the UK. 

Professor Robert J. STONE

BSc (Hons), MSc, C.Psychol, AFBPsS, CErgHF, FCIEHF

Professor Bob Stone holds a Chair in Interactive Multimedia Systems within the School of Engineering at the University of Birmingham, where he also directs the Human Interface Technologies (HIT) Team.  He is an Academician of the Russian Higher Education Academy of Sciences and Visiting Professor in Simulation Psychology at the University of Plymouth.  In 2003, he was made an Honorary Cossack at a ceremony in Starocherkassk, the former Don Cossack regional capital, recognising his decade of VR collaboration with the Russians.  A Chartered Psychologist and Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Ergonomics and Human Factors, Bob joined academia in 2003, after a long and successful career in defence, robotics and Virtual Reality (VR).  As well as projects in the engineering, aerospace, defence and medical sectors, Bob’s previous commercial team also pioneered early developments in Virtual Heritage, notably Virtual Stonehenge (1996), complete with the world’s first virtual sunrise and accurate night-time sky (a revised version using gaming technologies was delivered to English Heritage in 2009) and Virtual Lowry (1995), a project in which the artist’s Coming From The Mill painting was brought to life using VR techniques.  This and other cultural heritage projects supported Bob and colleagues from the US and Japan to launch the international Virtual Systems & Multi-Media organisation (VSMM) and in 1997, which became the oldest and largest repository of documents, news and information relating to heritage and technology.  Bob is also a trustee of the US Institute for the Visualization of History.  His current research focuses on VR and Augmented Reality techniques for heritage applications, particularly in the maritime sector, and includes an interest in the use of unmanned air, land and marine vehicles to conduct surveys of sites and wrecks in inaccessible locations.