Full text: Close-range imaging, long-range vision

ght developments in 
operties of the host 
Storage facilities of 
ajority of items for 
rting of artifacts and 
scholars to perform 
ure technique, ware 
on by other scholars 
11 Halif, Israel, will 
detailed analysis of 
ect access has been 
uation that involves 
iv Research Project 
mplete databases to 
primary collection 
tions is also often 
nal publication” has 
make comparative 
ry collection of the 
inaccessible. A 
artifact collections, 
> database, promises 
ital recording and 
ogy to explore the 
ill of the artifacts in 
few representative 
ournals and books). 
publication" is the 
(Phase IIT) in the 
rines recovered in 
s has prepared for 
ions of multiple 
movies. Digital 
t and rare artifacts, 
he non-identifiable 
ewed as a database 
-does not skew the 
sing or the unique, 
user. (In contrast, 
> limitations on the 
numbers of artifacts from a collection that may be 
represented visually in journal or book. Color 
representations are even more severely limited.) 
This paper argues that the standards for future 
publications of archaeological data should begin with 
the concept of total publication as a responsibility of 
the excavator. As in the Lahav Research Project 
publication of the figurine corpus, the author believes 
that future publications should present artifacts in 
detailed color from multiple angles, interpretive 
artistic drawings, and “three-dimensional” Virtual 
Reality objects, in order to allow the user the level of 
visual comparison necessary to the task of 
interpretation. Such publication also circumvents the 
difficulties frequently involved in attempting to review 
archived collections in national museums or 
storerooms where they often become de facto 
inaccessible. Future publications should aim for digital 
products that "take the place" of the actual objects by 
virtue of providing accurate and detailed data in visual, 
digital form. 
For the future database to be as useful as possible to the 
process of comparison, however, it will have to employ 
standards of publication that will permit manipulation of 
the digital artifacts. As stated above, the Lahav Research 
Project database of figurines has attempted to meet that 
requirement by providing high-resolution still photographs 
of each of the 817 artifacts from as many as eight angles, as 
well as “three-dimensional” VR movies of 155 figurines. 
Accompanying data include measurements (height, width, 
depth), colors, compositions, manufacture style, type, mold 
features, and archaeological contexts. The intention is that 
users will be able to make observations about individual 
artifacts as well as about the entire assemblage without the 
filters of excavator, final report, or staff expert. 
The techniques of photogrammetry applied to these same 
artifacts increase dramatically the usefulness of the Lahav 
Research Project collection by permitting not only on- 
screen manipulation but also finely detailed measurement 
by a user. Such information may be crucial to someone 
who, for example, tests an hypothesis of distribution of 
ceramic figurines in trade over a broad geographical area. 
If it can be shown that items found at Tell Halif are 
identical copies (i.e., derived from the same mold or copy 
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