Archaeological textiles are a particularly good choice of artefact for virtual handling

Touching the untouchable by virtual artefact handling

Computer interfaces that provide information to the sense of touch offer exciting possibilities for interactive museum displays in which the visitor can handle virtual replicas of museum objects.

Increasing access to archaeological artefacts by virtual handling

Experiencing objects in this way provides an opportunity to participate in the sensory worlds of the past and offers new forms of accessibility for a wide range of museum visitors. The focus of the proposed research cluster is this virtual handling of museum objects, with archaeological textiles selected as a case study.

New touch technologies offer the chance to handle virtual replicas of these rare and fragile objects. In addition, such a computer system is far more portable than a large collection of real objects and so offers significant outreach potential for public groups unable to visit the museum.

Date: 20 July 2010

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