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Archaeologists use digital tools to examine details of excavation

Digital technology has opened paths of discovery for archaeologists. The ability to depict an excavated site in a three-dimensional digital environment is transforming the process of archaeological research in Greece, although local universities are still in the early stages in this field. Virtual environment One of the first attempts to document archaeological data digitally was presented during an archaeology conference last month in Thessaloniki as an example of organizing an archive in a virtual environment. The «technology of geographical systems» in effect digitally depicts information collected by archaeologists, bringing together the digs’ elements and projecting them onto the computer screen. Facades, cross-sections, soil removed during the dig, trenches, findings and the environment itself formed the basis for the data used. «The digital environment allows us to correlate the objects in a virtual digital space in a realistic way,» researchers Markos Katsianis and Spyros Tsipidas explained. «The screen records the information collected by the archaeologist step by step throughout the excavation process,» they added. «Technology provides us with a better analysis of the data.» Third dimension Imaging an excavation in a digital space can incorporate the third dimension on which to base the archaeological research. It provides advantages and flexibility with regard to depicting images of the information, the space and time correlation and the analysis of the landscape. It can even project information about the surrounding area in which an archaeological site develops.