A complete World Wide Web Site is now available allowing Princetonians
to search an entire architectural database on the campus, read the text on the Architectural History
of Princeton and explore a handful of images saved from the live
3D software browser available on the Princeton Campus. Individuals
associated with Princeton University may make an appointment to
explore the full 3D system by phoning (609) 258-4597 during business hours.
For copyright reasons the large format images may not be downloaded off
the Princeton Campus at this time but this, too, should be available soon.
The Software Capability
A computer-based interactive graphics tour
leads the viewer through the campus as it appeared at different
times throughout the University's 250 years of history. It provides
an architectural and cultural view of that history through a coordinated
set of windows on the computer screen that displays a 3D model of
the campus, an extensive collection of photographs from the university's
archives, a variety of text documents and data on the buildings, people
and events that make up this history. This document is intended to
give a flavor of what has been and is being developed. It will be updated from time
to time as new material becomes ready and new features are implemented.
A computer walk through the Princeton campus, allows the viewer to pick a route,
select time in history, view the campus in 3D, walk around the buildings,
and browse various information about
Several specialized programs are written to run on the Silicon Graphics'
Reality Engine workstations but a variety of other delivery mechanisms are also
envisioned including Internet access (such as this), video, and CD-ROM.
Interactive Entry Points
The complete system allows electronic visitors to study Princeton's
Architectural and Cultural History from a variety of vantage points.
The entire WWW Site is now available but
there are here are also some demonstration pages of some of
the system capabilities which will run faster if the database
Sophisticated Date Selection
3D Tours of the Historic Campus!
Computer Assisted Video Generations
Sculpture on Campus
Search campus slides (live database interaction demonstration)
Building Data Sheets
Long Term Implications
This project came into being because many people involved with
the 250th planning discovered that the concept of a computer based
history for the university was but a special case of a larger
academic need. Already in 1994 there were several projects on
campus that involved the electronic integration of images and text
for both classroom and research purposes. Indeed, two instructional
projects had developed sophisticated online systems for delivering
images and information to students. The most notable of these are
the Piero Project and the
Mappamundi Project. The
Interactive Computer Graphics Laboratory, a component of
Instructional Technology Services within
Computing and Information Technology
(CIT) took a leading role in the technical development of the above
mentioned projects and coordinated the initial work on the Princeton Interactive
Campus History. This work is is now being carried on under
The Educational Technology Center (ETC)
to help create a major new
resource about Princeton but also, and more importantly, to develop
the infrastructure at Princeton to undertake additional similar
projects in the future.
Current Academic Impact
The design of this project is intended to create the infrastructure
to build other new applications for the Princeton classroom. In general
this involves increasing the sophistication with which we can integrate
computer graphics, electronic texts, online data base material, and
intelligent software user-interfaces. At present, the following
accomplishments can already be listed:
- Both the Piero Project and the
Mappamundi Project. have already undergone
some redesign based on the re-thinking being done for the 250th project.
Note that the Mappamundi project now links glossary texts with its
image display. You can run a
Mappamundi Database Search yourself if you wish.
- Professor William Childs in the Department of Art and Archaeology
has begun re-designing his archaeology database around the capabilities
being designed for the 250th project including:
- Professor David Underwood will be teaching a course on 20th century architecture
in the fall semester of 1996
that will use the software developed for this project live in the classroom.
- Professor John Pinto is preparing material for two courses that
will build on the infrastructure created for this project. This work
will take full advantage of the existing database and WWW interface
designs as well as add a large scale map browsing capability.
- Work is progressing with the Office of Physical Planning at Princeton
to develop the 3D model so that it can be useful in the architectural
and landscape planning of the campus and to connect it to further
adminsistrative and planning databases available on campus.
Other Princeton University 250th Anniversary Activities
In 1996 Princeton University is celebrating its 250th Anniversary.
For a description of general activities in preparation for the
celebration refer to the text
250th Anniversary Plans and
Commitments. The Campus Guide provides a brief introduction to
and to the town of
Princeton . Additional information can be found in a
The Alumni Council Site and its
own 250th Anniversary Site
are also available.
with any questions or suggestions you may have.