Smithsonian Puts Icons Online, in the Classroom
The Smithsonian has stepped to the forefront of 3D technology. At home or in the classroom, you can now download a three-dimensional, digital copy of a woolly mammoth skeleton, Lincoln’s life mask, a fossil whale or even the Wright Flyer. Zoom in on a detail, rotate or measure it; share and even print it, if you have access to a 3D printer. You can access them by visiting the Smithsonian’s online 3D gallery. The pioneering gallery was launched at a two-day 3D conference the Smithsonian hosted in November that gathered dozens of 3D digitization leaders. Participants discussed how the sophisticated, yet relatively easy-to-use 3D technology can preserve, better interpret and share collection objects. The technology promises to transform many science museums and education practices.