Digital Libraries for 3D Documents


Recent improvements in 3D content generation techniques in terms of modeling tools and aquisition devices like laser scanners have led to a huge amount of available 3D documents. They play an ever increasing important role in various fields like architecture, engineering, design, games, movies or cultural heritage. Digital libraries for 3D documents are to handle the challenges that arise with this increasing amount of 3D data. They provide tools enabling the user to efficiently search for existing 3D content involving different types of queries and category browsing. Additionally, they must ensure an adequate presentation of the search results.

Apart from arbitrary 3D documents, the computer graphics group's focus in the area of digital libraries is on data related to architecture an to cultural heritage. In the domain of architecture, we are especially interested in content-based retrieval and classification according to the topology of buildings and according to the shape of objects. For documents related to cultural heritage, our main focus is on high-quality visualization and on similarity search based on material properties.

Completed Projects

The european union funded project 3D-COFORM (3D-COllection-FORMation) deals with the development of novel techniques for digitising objects from the cultural heritage area. The goal is to digitise such objects more efficiently and with better quality compared to the current state-of-the-art. This way 3D-documentation will become an everyday practical choice for digital documentation campaigns in the cultural heritage sector.
The goal of the DURAARKK project is the development of tools and systems that allow sustainable long-term archival of digital 3D architectural data. It thereby supports a large variety of representations, starting with legacy CAD models over 3D point cloud data up to state of the art Building Information Modeling (BIM) documents.
EPOCH is a network of about a hundred European cultural institutions joining their efforts to improve the quality and effectiveness of the use of Information and Communication Technology for Cultural Heritage. Participants include university departments, research centres, heritage institutions, such as museums or national heritage agencies, and commercial enterprises, together endeavouring to overcome the fragmentation of current research in this field.
Instead of a goal-driven acquisition that determines the devices and sensors, we let the sensors and resulting available data determine the acquisition process. Data acquisition might become incidental to other tasks that devices/People to which sensors are attached carry out. A variety of challenging problems need to be solved to exploit this huge amount of data, including: dealing with continuous streams of time-dependent data, finding means of integrating data from different sensors and modalities, detecting changes in data sets to create 4D models, harvesting data to go beyond simple 3D geometry, and researching new paradigms for interactive inspection capabilities with 4D data sets. In this project, we envision solutions to these challenges, paving the way for affordable and innovative uses of information technology in an evolving world sampled by ubiquitous visual sensors.
The goal of the PROBADO project is to develop tools and systems that allow academic libraries to treat different common documents in the same way as textual documents. Amongst other document types, the project's focus is on 3D-models stemming from the architectural domain. Thereby, the major task is to develop appropriate searching and classification methods for such 3D objects.
The goal of this project is to elaborate a set of algorithms and methods that will allow our system to intelligently compare 3D objects in a way that is close to the human notion of resemblance. As a further step, these results will be used to automatically search in 3D Digital Libraries.