In particular, scientists from the University of Lund have recreated a specific villa, known as the House of Greek Epigrams, in 3D. They then followed the gaze of the study participants as they surveyed the home using VR. From then on, they explored what artifacts and places attracted the eyes of those in the house.
For example, to study how lighting has influenced the social experience of elements such as murals or even graffiti.
In general, the data from the visual interactions (sight, fixation and movement) themselves were entered into a geodatabase for further analysis. Very smart. They used Unity, the VR game engine and the lighting effects present at dawn and dusk …
“It is possible to query the geodatabase and automatically select areas with higher levels of visual attention and understand in which order the objects and positions occupied in the space by the user are seen. Multiple human sessions can be integrated and a large amount of data can be managed to find models that can relate to specific characteristics of the studied virtual space. In addition, by managing this data in 3D GIS, the individual user experience can be linked to a descriptive record (attribute table) and linked to a specific point of visual attention, which facilitates the combination of quantifying the visual experience with specific factors such as for example, the age of the user and the lighting conditions. “
You can see some of the evolution of 3D models here.
Lund’s team summarizes some of the technologies included:
“The 3D reconstruction of the House of Greek Epigrams in Pompeii was built using 3D modeling software (3D Studio Max) and successively imported into Unity, a cross-platform gaming engine for virtual reality experiences. This software enabled physical simulation of lighting. Two very different scenarios were chosen for the specific scope of this study: the dawn of the winter solstice and the noon of the summer solstice. The system records the visual experience of the participants in the study (five Caucasian women of different ages). Baseline data, analytical insights and direct measurements were obtained using Cognitive3D software.
You can read more in this area of the “Swedish Pompeii Project” website.