October 12, 2012

Fraunhofer HHI developed the Interactive 3D-BookReader

Experience magnificent books in digital 3D

For the first time ever, magnificent over one thousand year old books are also on view in a digital 3D format at the "Magnificent Manuscripts – Treasures of Book Illumination" exhibition at the Kunsthalle of the Hypo Cultural Foundation in Munich The Interactive 3D BookReader forms part of the exhibition which opens on Friday, 19 October 2012 at the Kunsthalle of the Hypo Cultural Foundation in Munich.

Allowing visitors to leaf through volumes illuminated in gold and encrusted with precious stones is something that most museums simply cannot permit. Secure in their glass cases, these exhibits seem remote and untouchable. Yet with the Interactive 3D BookReader, developed by the Fraunhofer Heinrich Hertz Institute in partnership with the Bavarian State Library, visitors can now not only view digitalized books in 3D without any need for special glasses, but browse through them, enlarge them and rotate them as well. The Interactive 3D BookReader opens up virtual access to these magnificent treasures of the art of illumination. Visitors don’t even need to touch the screen as an infrared camera captures the movements of one or more of their fingers while image processing software identifies their position in space in real-time. This is how they can move, browse, rotate and scale the exhibits shown on the screen. Even the slightest of finger movements can be translated into movements of the cursor. The monitor screen of the Interactive 3D BookReader shows the user's right and left eye two slightly offset images which combine to give an in-depth impression. The two stereo views are adapted to correspond to the viewer's actual position. This means that visitors don't need special 3D glasses to view the books in three dimensions.

The Fraunhofer HHI was commissioned by the Munich Digitization Center (MDZ) of the Bavarian State Library.