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Roman Forum Recreated in California

时间:2005-05-30 16:00来源:互联网 提供网友:wuqisheep   字体: [ ]

Jan 31,2003


Students and researchers can 1)stroll through the Roman Forum1 for the first time in 1,500 years, thanks to computer technology. Historians and architects have created a virtual tour of an archeological site that lies in ruins.

It is a sunny winter day on the campus of the University of California, Los Angeles. But in the university's "visualization2 portal," it is 10:00 a.m. on June 21, 400 AD, just decades before the collapse3 of the Roman Empire.

An image is projected on a semi-circular screen, using three projectors4 coordinated5 by a supercomputer.

 Visitors appear to be moving through the center of classical Rome as they enter the complex of buildings called the Forum. Bernard Frischer, a classics professor, helps viewers orient themselves to their surroundings. "The Roman Forum, the city center, the heart of the city and the place where so many of the main institutions had their headquarters," he said.

There is the Roman Senate building, the temple of 2)Castor and 3)Pollux, and of 4)Saturn6 and 5)Vesta, and the triumphal arch of General Septimius Severus. There is also the residence the pontifex maximus, the high priest of Roman religion, where Julius Caesar once lived when he held that position.

The visualization project is the result of collaboration7 among architects, historians and computer specialists. It uses flight simulation technology developed for the U.S. military.

Dean Abernathy headed the technical team that created the reconstruction8. He says that although parts of the Forum survive, much of this virtual Forum is based on research, and some on conjecture9. "We use text descriptions, which of course are very unreliable but they can give you a general idea as to what was going on," he explained. "But there are also depictions on coins, and then also reliefs on buildings themselves."

Relief carvings10 gave information on the design of the Basilica Julia, a complicated structure built by Julius Caesar. It once housed a law court and was used for public events.

Professor Diane Favro of the Department of Architecture says the reconstructed Forum offers insights to her students. Three dimensional modeling shows that older reconstructions11 were sometimes inaccurate12, and offers a better understanding of these buildings. "And I think for me the most energizing13 part of it is that we can move through these buildings in real time," she said. "And I think architecture is not just about seeing a style and seeing a building in a two dimensional photo, but understanding that moving through buildings is essential for good design, whether it's in the ancient world or the modern world."

Technology expert Paul Hoffman says the visualization portal has been used to map such modern sites as the UCLA campus and downtown Los Angeles. With Professor Bernard Frischer, these scholars and technicians are developing a program to tour the Forum on home computers. "Right now, we can have Bernie [Frischer] set a path of historical significance through this kind of a model," he said. "And then we can create a movie that can be played back. Right now, we're able to do that and people are playing these things back on a high speed laptop."

Within a few years, computer programs will offer tours of much of ancient Rome, giving viewers the freedom to select their own routes and explore buildings. Such programs will later be available over the Internet.

Professor Frischer says his team has fulfilled a centuries old dream of reconstructing the Roman Forum, although the reconstruction is virtual, not real. "The significance is that this is the biggest such cultural heritage 3D computer model, I think, ever made," he said. "It's hard to know exactly that's going on minute-to-minute around the world, but as far as we know, it's the biggest. And it's a kind of a pilot for what can be done in terms of doing all of Rome itself someday, but also the other great centers of our cultural heritage, from Kyoto, the Forbidden City, on over to Machu Picchu [in Peru], Jerusalem, and so on."

The classics professor says he hopes to work with scholars around the world to build a worldwide cultural heritage "time machine."

Mike O'Sullivan VOA news, Los Angeles


1)    stroll [strEul]v.闲逛, 漫步

2)    Castor [5kB:stE][天]北河二(双子座α星)

3)    Pollux [`pClEks]n.[天]双子座之星

4)    Saturn [5sAtE(:)n]n.[天]土星, 土星火箭

5)    Vesta [5vestE](罗马神话中的)女灶神




1 forum cilx0     
  • They're holding a forum on new ways of teaching history.他们正在举行历史教学讨论会。
  • The organisation would provide a forum where problems could be discussed.这个组织将提供一个可以讨论问题的平台。
2 visualization 5cb21f7c94235e860596a2dfd90ccf82     
  • In 2D visualization and drawing applications, vertical and horizontal scrolling are common. 在二维的可视化及绘图应用中,垂直和水平滚动非常普遍。 来自About Face 3交互设计精髓
  • Ophthalmoscopy affords the only opportunity for direct visualization of blood vessels. 检眼镜检查法提供直接观察血管的唯一机会。
3 collapse aWvyE     
  • The country's economy is on the verge of collapse.国家的经济已到了崩溃的边缘。
  • The engineer made a complete diagnosis of the bridge's collapse.工程师对桥的倒塌做了一次彻底的调查分析。
4 projectors c83fdd343934671c4604431c99b02a44     
电影放映机,幻灯机( projector的名词复数 )
  • Energy projectors fired and peeled off the ships' armor in a flash. 能量投射器开火然后在一阵闪光后剥离了飞船的装甲。
  • All classrooms equipped with computers, projectors, video and audio booth, broadcasting equipment. 全部教室配备电脑、投影仪、视频展台和音响、广播设备。
5 coordinated 72452d15f78aec5878c1559a1fbb5383     
  • The sound has to be coordinated with the picture. 声音必须和画面协调一致。
  • The numerous existing statutes are complicated and poorly coordinated. 目前繁多的法令既十分复杂又缺乏快调。 来自英汉非文学 - 环境法 - 环境法
6 Saturn tsZy1     
  • Astronomers used to ask why only Saturn has rings.天文学家们过去一直感到奇怪,为什么只有土星有光环。
  • These comparisons suggested that Saturn is made of lighter materials.这些比较告诉我们,土星由较轻的物质构成。
7 collaboration bW7yD     
  • The two companies are working in close collaboration each other.这两家公司密切合作。
  • He was shot for collaboration with the enemy.他因通敌而被枪毙了。
8 reconstruction 3U6xb     
  • The country faces a huge task of national reconstruction following the war.战后,该国面临着重建家园的艰巨任务。
  • In the period of reconstruction,technique decides everything.在重建时期,技术决定一切。
9 conjecture 3p8z4     
  • She felt it no use to conjecture his motives.她觉得猜想他的动机是没有用的。
  • This conjecture is not supported by any real evidence.这种推测未被任何确切的证据所证实。
10 carvings 3ccde9120da2aaa238c9785046cb8f86     
n.雕刻( carving的名词复数 );雕刻术;雕刻品;雕刻物
  • The desk was ornamented with many carvings. 这桌子装饰有很多雕刻物。 来自《简明英汉词典》
  • Shell carvings are a specialty of the town. 贝雕是该城的特产。 来自《简明英汉词典》
11 reconstructions b68a36323018dfe7d6624e864a340794     
重建( reconstruction的名词复数 ); 再现; 重建物; 复原物
  • Multicolored reconstructions have been formed using (black and white) volume holographic plates. 利用黑白体积全息片已经做成了彩色重建象。
  • The method gives ways to evaluate collision speed in traffic accident reconstructions. 该模型为交通事故再现推算碰撞速度提供了有效实用的方法。
12 inaccurate D9qx7     
  • The book is both inaccurate and exaggerated.这本书不但不准确,而且夸大其词。
  • She never knows the right time because her watch is inaccurate.她从来不知道准确的时间因为她的表不准。
13 energizing e3f2f6cebc209a6ba70f00dcd4da3708     
v.给予…精力,能量( energize的现在分词 );使通电
  • a refreshing and energizing fruit drink 提神并增加体能的果汁饮料
  • The time required after energizing a device, before its rated output characteristics begin to apply. 从设备通电到它开始提供额定输出特性之间所需的时间。 来自辞典例句
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