Interactive Animation of historical Patents
Technical documents collected by libraries, museums and archives sometimes describe very interesting machines or mechanisms. Via interactive animations those objects may be set into motion again. This gives people the chance for a better understanding how things work.
The described project uses videos, images and interactive 3D-models to make the patent texts and drawings better understandable. Especially the interactive animations support a deeper insight into the inventors ideas by rotating, zooming and switching transparency using the mouse or a touch display.
The Geheimes Staatsarchiv Preußischer Kulturbesitz Berlin has a collection of thousands of patents from the 19th century. Some of them where selected to be presented on media stations during the exhibition “Klosterstaße 36 – Sammeln, Ausstellen, Patentieren” which shows documents from the beginnings of Prussian industrialisation. The media station was implemented by the DMG-Lib team at Technical University Ilmenau. Since the implementation is browser-based the contents can now be accessed by the broad public too. The Digital Mechanism and Gear Library hosts the media station as well as the single models.
Three partners where involved into the development of the media station:
- Geheimes Staatsarchiv PK Berlin supplied the patent scans and according meta data,
- Eckedesign was responsible for the general layout of the media station,
- the DMG-Lib team at Technische Universität Ilmenau developed the 3D models as well as the HTML5 implementation, which is based on WebGL
At the media station users can explore the inventions using videos, images and interactive 3D-models. English and German language is supported.
On the left of the media station people can select a certain model. In the middle certain aspects of the model are shown by image, video or interactive animation. On the right it is possible to switch between the different aspects and get further information about the model, e.g. by selecting one of the predefined views in interactive animations.