UC Berkeley’s HearstCAVE project has leveraged teams of undergraduate students to develop new 3D content for the Phoebe A. Hearst Museum of Anthropology. Research IT’s Quinn Dombrowski presented on this work at the Academic Technology Expo (ATXpo), held at Stanford University on October 2, 2017. This annual event has grown from a local Stanford showcase to a regional gathering of academic technologists, with presenters from UC Berkeley, UCSF, San Francisco State University, and San Jose State University, among other institutions. Colleagues from Berkeley’s new Research, Teaching, and Learning organization, which aligns Research IT, ETS, and the Center for Teaching and Learning, were also in attendance.
Dombrowski explained that generation of 3D models out of 2D photographs -- a technique called “photogrammetry” -- is computationally intensive, and how teams of Berkeley undergrads use the Savio high-performance computing cluster to reduce processing time.
While Dombrowski’s presentation on experiential learning in the context of a paid student position was atypical for the classroom and learning management focus of ATXpo, similar technologies are also gaining traction in the classroom. A group from UCSF demonstrated their system for using Virtual Reality to reinforce anatomy education, by providing additional opportunities for virtual dissection. Similarly, instructors at San Jose State University have been using interactive 3D science models via iPads and the HTC Vive virtual reality headset. Stanford’s Graduate School of Business has implemented a virtual campus aimed at improving the student experience for participants in an online executive education program.
The HearstCAVE project will be showcasing its early results in a series of events throughout this year. Check the Research IT news feed for information about upcoming public events.