Cyber-Archaeology, Scientific Story-telling and the GIS Nexus

Author(s): Thomas E. Levy; Neil G. Smith

Year: 2017


Since 1999, UC San Diego Levantine Archaeology Laboratory excavations have been ‘paperless’ with the aim of developing digital data acquisition, curation, and 2D and 3D dissemination tools for archaeological and cultural heritage data. GIS provides the nexus for our data flow because all archaeological data collected in the field has a geospatial footprint. The X, Y and Z coordinates of the archaeological data provides the organizational and visualization principle of the archaeological endeavor. Our real-time GIS data recording software, ArchField, provides the main data-recording tool during the excavation process. Tablet based Open-Dig, records the metadata concerning the contextual aspects of the excavated material culture; and ArchaeoSTOR serves as a web-based geo-spatial database that pulls together a wide range of digital data in different formats from LiDAR, airborne photography, terrestrial and marine geophysics, Structure from Motion (SfM) and more. This data-flow provides the perfect tool-kit for objective scientific storytelling, in our case, for the contentious field of Biblical Archaeology. To more effectively tell these stories, 'Big' cultural heritage data is moved over high-speed fiber optic networks and ultimately displayed in personal VR displays and total immersive 3D CAVE environments so that more people can experience the stories.

Cite this Record

Cyber-Archaeology, Scientific Story-telling and the GIS Nexus. Thomas E. Levy, Neil G. Smith. Presented at The 81st Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Vancouver, British Columbia. 2017 ( tDAR id: 431202)

Spatial Coverage

min long: 25.225; min lat: 15.115 ; max long: 66.709; max lat: 45.583 ;

Record Identifiers

Abstract Id(s): 15820