Service Communautaire d'Information sur la Recherche et le Développement - CORDIS

Comparative historic gardens on the Web

The website contains an explanation of the project; together with comparative information about the two gardens. It contains: live video images of both gardens; live video images with synchronized explanatory VRML models, giving access to hyperlinked information about plants visible in the images; a selection of the archived video clips; a search mechanism to compare archived clips from both gardens; discussion and frequently asked questions. The site is based on active server pages.

This prototype implementation has shown that it can increase and broaden public access; and serve as a model for the implementation of comparative digital display of related locations and information across Europe, in order to increase understanding of landscape history, design and culture. These goals have been achieved by: publishing comparative on-line and real-time digital video of these two historic gardens of European importance to visitor information systems on-site, on the partner site and on the Web; based upon digitally mapping the gardens in a computer based three-dimensional spatial information system with VRML to enable simultaneous access to non-visual information, e.g. local plant-names keyed to Latin. The results are intended to serve as a model particularly for gardens and parks, but also for other sites of international and comparative importance, which are subject to frequent change with restricted public access, such as new buildings and archaeological sites.

The primary objective of the Valhalla Project was to digitally present historic gardens and landscape parks, on-site using web technologies, and on the web, to convey a site overview not usually achievable at ground level and to increase and to broaden public access; and to trial a web based facility for comparative digital display of related locations and information across Europe, in order to facilitate improved public understanding of landscape history, design and culture. To achieve this it proved necessary to improve methods of digital recording and display of Historic Gardens and Landscape Parks; and thus as a result to be able to use digital technology to enhance flexible visitor management so conserving more fragile locations; and so enable visitors including the disabled to plan bespoke routes; thereby improving the manageability, marketability and visitor interpretation of these Historic Sites. The trial website demonstrates this implementation.

More information on the VALHALLA project can be found at:

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Frenchay Campus, Coldharbour Lane
United Kingdom