ACM Journal on

Computing and Cultural Heritage (JOCCH)

Latest Articles

A New Infrared True-Color Approach for Visible-Infrared Multispectral Image Analysis

In this article, we present a new method for the analysis of visible/Infrared multispectral sets... (more)

From Point Cloud Data to Structural Analysis Through a Geometrical hBIM-Oriented Model

The assessment of the structural behavior of historic masonry structures like Gothic cathedrals is an important engineering and architectural issue,... (more)

A New Projection-based Exhibition System for a Museum

In this article, we propose a new projection-based system to exhibit a realistic virtual cultural object in a museum. We introduce a new design by... (more)

Egocentric Visitors Localization in Cultural Sites

We consider the problem of localizing visitors in a cultural site from egocentric (first-person) images. Localization information can be useful both... (more)

Digital Methods in Intangible Cultural Heritage Research: A Case Study in Tango Argentino

With this article, we present the ongoing research project “Tango Danceability of Music in European Perspective” and the... (more)

Improved Hieroglyph Representation for Image Retrieval

In recent years, an interdisciplinary effort between archaeologists and computer vision experts has... (more)

Wedge Cameras for Minimally Invasive Archaeology

Acquiring images of archaeological artifacts is an essential step for the study and preservation of cultural heritage. In constrained environments, traditional acquisition techniques may fail or be too invasive. We present an optical device including a camera and a wedge waveguide that is optimized for imaging within confined spaces in archeology.... (more)

Segmentation, Reconstruction, and Visualization of Ancient Inscriptions in 2.5D

This article presents a new algorithm for the automated reconstruction and visualization of damaged ancient inscriptions. After reviewing current... (more)


A new call for the special Issue on "Culture Games" has been released. Deadline 15 December 2019.

Franco Niccolucci has been appoitned as the new Editor-in-Chief for JOCCH. For more information see here.

Good news from Scopus - CiteScore 2017 figure has been released
The CiteScore 2017, powered by Scopus, has just been released and the JOCCH 2017 CiteScores is 1.62! Considering that this indicator was 0.85 in 2016, JOCCH has really improved!

Thanks to all JOCCH authors and reviewers who contributed to this success.

Text of older news is available on the Announcements page.


Forthcoming Articles

Creating a Knowledge Base to Research the history of UK Museums through Rapid Application Development

Several studies have highlighted the absence of an integrated comprehensive dataset covering all of the UK's museums, hence impeding research into the emergence, evolution and wider impact of the UK's museums sector. "Mapping Museums" is an interdisciplinary project aiming to develop a comprehensive database of UK museums in existence since 1960, and to use this to undertake an evidence-based analysis of the development of the UK's museums sector during 1960-2020 and the links to wider cultural, social, and political concerns. A major part of the project has been the iterative, participatory design of a new RDF/S Knowledge Base to store data and metadata relating to the UK's museums, and a Web Application for the project's humanities scholars to browse, search and visualise the data in order to investigate their research questions. This paper presents the challenges we faced in developing the Knowledge Base and Web Application, our methodology and methods, the design and implementation of the system, and the design, outcomes and implications of a user trial undertaken with a group of experts from the UK's museums sector.

A Procedural Approach to Creating American Second Empire Houses

In this paper, we present a procedural approach to capture a variety of appearances of American Second Empire houses, which are well known for their mansard roofs and their inspired ornamentation. To develop this procedural approach, we have identified the set of rules and similarities of Second Empire houses. Our procedural approach, therefore, captures the style differences of Second Empire houses with a relatively few number of parameters. Using our interface, we are able to generate virtual houses in a wide variety of styles of American Second Empire architecture. We have also developed a method to break up these virtual models into slices in order to efficiently and economically 3D print them. Using this method, we have printed miniatures of two landmark buildings in Savannah and Baltimore: Hamilton-Turner Inn and Enoch Pratt House. We observe that the virtual models still provide more details because of the limited resolution of the 3D printing process.

Gloss, Color and Topography Scanning for Reproducing a Painting's Appearance using 3D Printing

High fidelity reproductions of paintings provide new opportunities to museums in preserving and providing access to cultural heritage. This paper presents an integrated system which is able to capture and fabricate color, topography and gloss of a painting, of which gloss capturing forms the most important contribution. A 3D imaging system, utilizing stereo imaging combined with fringe projection, is extended to capture spatially-varying gloss, utilizing the effect of specular reflectance polarization. The gloss is measured by sampling the specular reflection around Brewsters angle, where these reflections are effectively polarized, and can be separated from the unpolarized, diffuse reflectance. Off-center gloss measurements are calibrated relative to the center measurement. Off-specular gloss measurements, following from local variation of the surface normal, are masked based on the height map and corrected. Shadowed regions, caused by the 3D relief, are treated similarly. The area of a single capture is approximately 180x90mm at a resolution of 25x25¼m. Aligned color, height, and gloss tiles are stitched together off-line, registering overlapping color regions. The resulting color, height and gloss maps are inputs for the poly-jet 3D printer. Two paintings were reproduced to verify the effectiveness and efficiency of the proposed system. One painting was scanned four times, consecutively rotated by 90 degrees, to evaluate the influence of the scanning system geometric configuration on the gloss measurement. Experimental results show that the method is sufficiently fast for practical application, i.e. to scan a whole painting within eight hours, during closing hours of a museum. The results can well be used for the purpose of physical reproduction and other applications needing first order estimates of the appearance. Our method to extend appearance scanning with gloss measurements is a valuable addition in the quest for realistic reproductions, in terms of its practical applicability - number of images needed for reconstruction and speed - and its perceptual added value, when added to color and topography reproduction.

Supporting the Cross-cultural Appreciation of Traditional Chinese Puppetry through a Digital Gesture Library

In recent years, digital cultural heritage has attracted much attention in the HCI domain, but there are currently few studies that focus on enhancing the appreciation of intangible cultural heritage content amongst cross-cultural audiences. This paper reports on the development of a Digital Gesture Library to support cross-cultural appreciation of traditional Chinese puppetry. We describe fieldwork with professional puppeteers to understand their practices and art form, which informed the development of the Digital Gesture Library, which uses a three-perspective archive of puppetry gestures and a tangible interface to support cross-cultural audiences? appreciation of puppetry and encourage further exploration of Chinese culture. We present findings on the efficacy of the Digital Gesture Library from qualitative and quantitative user studies and, from this, discuss the opportunities and challenges for developing digital technology for cross-cultural appreciation of intangible heritage.

VISE: An interface for VIsual Search and Exploration of museum collections

We present a VISE, an interface for VIsual Search and Exploration of about 836,000 museum objects extracted from National Museum Scotland and Rijks Museum web pages. VISE provides an interactive visual summary of the whole museum objects that encourages users to initiate their search from the interface. Usability evaluation of the visual interface revealed that users are more satisfied and attracted to explore museum collections via VISE than the National Museum Scotland interface (NMSI). We also learn that users with no background knowledge of museum collections, for example, visitors or tourist, can more easily discover new objects from the museum collections using VISE than NMSI.

Digital Heritage as a Scholarly Field-Topics, Researchers and Perspectives from a bibliometric point of view

Digital heritage comprises a broad variety of approaches and topics and involves researchers from multiple disciplines. Against this background, this paper presents a four-stage investigation on standards, publications, disciplinary cultures as well as scholars in the field of digital heritage and particularly tangible objects as monuments and sites, carried out in 2016 and 2017. It includes results of (1) the inquiry of nearly 4000 publications from major conferences, (2) a workshop-based survey involving 44 researchers, (3) 15 qualitative interviews as well as (4) two online surveys with 1000 and 700 participants respectively. As an overall finding, the community is driven by researchers from European countries, especially Italy, with a background in humanities. Cross-national co-authorships are promoted by cultural and spatial closeness and?probably due to funding policy?EU membership. A discourse is primarily driven by technologies and the most common keywords refer to the technologies used. Most prominent research areas are data acquisition and management, visualization or analysis. Recent topics are for instance unmanned airborne vehicle (UAV)-based 3D surveying technologies, augmented and virtual reality visualization, metadata and paradata standards for documentation or virtual museums. Since a lack of money is named as biggest obstacle nowadays, competency and human resources are most frequently named as demand. An epistemic culture in the scholarly field of digital heritage is closer to engineering then to humanities. Moreover, conference series are most relevant for a scientific discourse, and especially EU projects set pace as most important research endeavors.

Mapping Medieval Christianity. CARE-GIS: reusing web digital data in a webGIS application

CARE-GIS is a mapping application, with GIS (Geographic Information Systems) functionalities, which gives a geographic dimension to the important and valuable Corpus Architecturae Religiosae Europeae (CARE) dataset, useful not only for the scientific community, but also for a larger public of non-specialists, who can easily access the CARE information from a map. The CARE-GIS application makes it possible to select and display CARE sites? information (only for Italy, in the current version), by means of query forms, which allows to cross several fields of the recorded data, in order to create thematic maps with the selected data. Moreover the flexible nature of the application, by means of GeoJSON files and the QGIS software, allows to add more layers, and map historical/archaeological data vs. other types of data, such as geomorphological ones or the analysis of the construction materials, or any other data related to the CARE sites. The displayed CARE data are extracted from the WikiCARE web pages by means of PHP ?scraping? functions. A light weight database is used by the CARE-GIS application, mainly to handle the connection to the WikiCARE website and fasten up the CARE sites search functions. The responsive CARE-GIS user interface allows accessing the maps from any kind of digital device, such as computers, tablets and smartphones, making it a useful web application to get online information, when visiting the CARE mapped historical sites.

Development of An Augmented Reality Tour Guide for A Cultural Heritage Site

In this article, the design, development, and evaluation of augmented reality (AR) based mobile application for a tour guide are discussed. The primary objective is to develop a complete working set of a mobile tour application comparable to the classical guided tour to provide an enhanced tour experience to the visitors. The developed application is demonstrated by applying it to an actual tour site, the Hwaseong Fortress in Suwon, South Korea, a UNESCO designated World Heritage. The usability of the developed mobile application is then evaluated by random tourists at the tour site. The application is designed with the three main functions: navigation to the point of interests, visualization of information with AR technology, and interactive learning activities with AR-based serious games. Important contents about the heritage are categorized and grouped into multi-themes, and multiple tour routes are designed and implemented accordingly to maximize the effective information delivery and to avoid being monotonous while using the application. Efforts are also made to provide a more immersive and interactive experience of the historical, cultural, and architectural details of the heritage utilizing novel AR visualization methods. A systematically developed survey instrument from the field of information systems and human-computer interaction is tailored to fit into this research, and employed for the application evaluation. The survey returned positive results with suggestions of possible refinements for the future works. The proposed method of a device-aided tour is anticipated to enhance the tourists' experience, and thereby play an important role as an alternative to the classical guided tour.

Digital Dance Ethnography: Organizing Large Dance Collections

Folk dances often reflect the socio-cultural influences prevailing in different periods and nations; each dance produces a meaning, a story with the help of music, costumes and dance moves. However, dances have no borders; they have been transmitted from generation to generation, along different countries, mainly due to movements of people carrying and disseminating their civilization. Studying the contextual correlation of dances along neighboring countries, unveils the evolution of this unique intangible heritage in time, and helps in understanding potential cultural similarities. In this work we present a method for contextually motion analysis that organizes dance data semantically, to form the first digital dance ethnography. Firstly, we break dance motion sequences into some narrow temporal overlapping feature descriptors, named motion and style words, and then cluster them in a high-dimensional features space to define motifs. The distribution of those motion and style motifs creates motion and style signatures, in the content of a bag-of-motifs representation, that implies for a succinct but descriptive portrayal of motions sequences. Signatures are time-scale and temporal-order invariant, capable of exploiting the contextual correlation between dances, and distinguishing fine-grained difference between semantically similar motions. We then use quartet-based analysis to organize dance data into a categorization tree, while inferred information from dance metadata descriptions are then used to set parent-child relationships. We illustrate a number of different organization trees, and portray the evolution of dances over time. The efficiency of our method is also demonstrated in retrieving contextually similar dances from a database.

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