3D Digitization and the St. Chad Gospels

3D is the next step in digitization. Please watch the video below and prepare to be amazed:

If you’ve ever viewed a digitized book or manuscript, you know how very two-dimensional it is, and that seeing an image on a computer screen is nothing like holding the object in your own hands. Of course, a 2D version is far better than nothing, but it is limited in the information it can convey to you.

You do not need specific software to view the images that Dr. Endres and his team have made available, just an up-to-date browser. Imagine having texts in a language unknown to you, translated and viewable in your language, right on the page that still contains accurate stains, tears and cockling as found on the original. 3D can also digitally flatten pages that were so warped that reading the original artifact difficult. Each 3D page is built onto a digital wire frame that exactly matches the original page in every warp and wrinkle, and a full range of photographs is taken in every colour in the spectrum to create the truest possible representation. In short, while 3D acknowledges that a digital image in not the same as the real thing, its aim is to make a representation of the original that may be even better: the pages can be rotated 360* in any angle; infrared pictures allow us to see any corrections that were made to the manuscript that the naked eye can’t pick up; digital flattening of warped pages; and digital translations.

3D digitization is extremely time-consuming and expensive, which is why it is still very rare. But the more people who know about this, the better, so spread the word!

To see some 2D representations of the St. Chad gospels, click here:

Screen Shot 2014-09-10 at 9.07.03 PM

(image retrieved from https://lichfield.as.uky.edu/st-chad-gospels/features)

Or, click here:

http://www.lichfield-cathedral.org/about-us/treasures/st-chad-gospels

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