The Daily Aztec: 3D Greek digital photographic library allows researches to piece together remnants of the past. “In a tech-savvy world, SDSU’s Classics department is adopting more innovative means in which students can take a look at ancient artifacts – without having to travel thousands of miles across the globe. ‘Some of the most important pieces are sherds … there’s one piece in New York, four pieces in Florence, two pieces in Paris in the Louvre,’ Dr. Danielle Bennett, a professor in the Humanities department said. ‘3D design is going to bring them all together in the digital library.'”
Tech Xplore: A new algorithm for solving archaeological puzzles. “A team of researchers at Technion and the University of Haifa have developed a new computer vision approach for solving archaeological puzzles. In their paper, pre-published on arXiv, they introduce a general algorithm that can automatically reassemble fragments of archaeological artifacts.”
Quartz: Thailand wants US museums to give its art back . ” In 2014, DHS returned 554 ancient artifacts taken from the World Heritage archaeological site Ban Chiang that had been displayed in a museum in Santa Ana, California. Since then, the Thai ministry of culture has stepped up recovery efforts, and on Nov. 6 Artnet News reported that Thailand is demanding the return of 23 antiquities housed in the Asian Art Museum in San Francisco, the Norton Simon Museum in Pasadena, and New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art, among other places.”
The Hindu: When you fight the good fight: tracking down stolen idols. “In his new book, Vijay Kumar explains how a network of history buffs tracks down stolen idols using WhatsApp and crowdsourced sleuthing In times when WhatsApp has been looked down upon as the purveyor of fake news, S Vijay Kumar, a Singapore-based shipping company manager and his friends at India Pride Project have been using it to fight crime.”
New York Times: These Cultural Treasures Are Made of Plastic. Now They’re Falling Apart.. “Of an estimated 8,300 million metric tons of plastic produced to date, roughly 60 percent is floating in the oceans or stuffed in landfills. Most of us want that plastic to disappear. But in museums, where objects are meant to last forever, plastics are failing the test of time.”
Economic Times: Prepare a database of stolen antiques, make FIRs public: CIC tells ASI. “The Archaeological Survey of India should start publishing alerts, photographs and FIRs about thefts of antiques from historical sites to make their smuggling difficult, the Central Information Commission has said.” FIR in this case stands for First Information Report; you can get more details here.
Sarah E. Bond: Digitization ≠ Repatriation: When Digital Humanities Provides Access But Not Restitution. “This week over at Hyperallergic, I wrote about new exhibits at the British Library and the Victoria & Albert Museum which both engage with the cultural heritage of ancient and medieval Ethiopia. An examination of the Ethiopian cultural heritage held in the libraries and museums of Britain can perhaps demonstrate a seminal point about digitization and the digital humanities more broadly: Digital editions can never fully replace an analog object. No matter how many manuscripts we digitize and make available online or 3D scans we create of the Parthenon frieze, they are not a replacement for repatriation.”