Hurdles to Overcome

A view of Florence from San Miniato; one can see the Duomo, buildings along the river Arno, and the Palazzo Vecchio.

June 11th, 2019

Professor Bent has arrived! If we were running in my last post, we’re sprinting now. Of course, a project on this scale is a marathon, not a race. We met at the Innocenti yesterday morning, working with the laser scanner to scan as much of the exterior as we could - we’ll continue that tomorrow. Today, we met again at Santa Croce to obtain high-quality scans of the exterior, which we’ll continue on Thursday. This laser scanner is fascinating and remarkably easy to use - Professor Bent has been steadily training me and Alice on it, and we’ve already done a few scans on our own.

We’ve encountered some hurdles with how exactly to work with data of this size. The number of photos it takes to produce an accurate, detailed photogrammetric model is staggering - my hard drive heavily strains under the weight of all those raw photos, and though our internet connection here is a bit better than in Lexington, it still takes many hours to transfer the photos from just one building into the Florence as it Was Box drive.

Personally, I’ve become stuck on the idea of creating a VR experience at San Miniato after our second visit there last week. The space and the view are absolutely beautiful, and we’ll soon have models of both the exterior and the interior. Although this is a project for August, and I may run into some technical difficulties with both the size of the models and how to stitch them together, we could end up with a video or executable experience that could be shared with others to say, “Look at what we’re doing with this data; look at the possibilities.”

Win Gustin