Making the Javascript Model Viewer

Mark-Jan Nederhof
Date Authored: 
Tuesday, October 17, 2017

At the University of St Andrews, Mark-Jan Nederhof developed JavaScript code to view 3D models on web pages, on the basis of the three.js library. Different kinds of control were implemented for navigation, using mouse movements and key strokes. In addition, functionality was added to display the distance between any two points on the surface of a coffin that are selected by mouse clicks.

We also added new functionality to the Java tool PhilologEg, which has been under development at the University of St Andrews for a number of years. Existing functionality allows annotation of images of Ancient Egyptian textual artefacts with hieroglyphic transcriptions, transliterations, translations, and other data. The added functionality allows similar annotation of 3D models, with the help of the libGDX library, originally developed for 3D computer games.

A new Unicode representation for Ancient Egyptian was proposed by computer scientists and Egyptologists from St Andrews, Berlin, Paris and Liege. It is based on the encoding used by the tool PLOTTEXT, which was developed in the 1980s. The proposal was accepted to become part of the next version of Unicode. As part of the current project, an internship was funded to investigate implementation of the hieroglyphic encoding in the font technology OpenType. 

Editor's note: The user can access Dr. Nederhof's Javascript viewer can be accessed by clicking the link under "Model Online" at the bottom of several of the coffin pages.