Saturday, July 26, 2008

UCLA Digital Model of Qumran Featured in National Geographic Israel

The UCLA digital model of Qumran was recently featured in an article in National Geographic Israel. The article includes photos from the reconstruction of Qumran and a brief summary of Robert R. Cargill's doctoral research. The digital model of Qumran is a fully-reconstructed, 3D realtime reconstruction of the settlement at Khirbet Qumran and its surrounding environment. Qumran is the site nearest to the caves where the Dead Sea Scrolls were discovered. The Qumran digital model includes switches that can be toggled to show different interpretations of various contested loci at Qumran, as well as different periods of construction and expansion. The Qumran digital model is on display at the UCLA visualization portal on UCLA's Westwood, CA campus. For more information, visit

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

New Qumran Article in the Jerusalem Post

Ziv Hellman has written an interesting piece in the Jerusalem Post about Qumran entitled "The Qumran Quandry." Make sure to check it out.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

DSS Now on Exhibition in Raleigh, NC

The Dead Sea Scrolls are now on display at the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences in Raleigh. The exhibit will run through Dec. 28, 2008. The exhibition features 12 scrolls – four of which have never been publicly displayed – and more than a hundred artifacts from the Qumran ruins.

The exhibit also features videos of the reconstructed settlement at Qumran taken from version 2.0 of the UCLA Qumran Digital Model. The new version of the Qumran model has an improved texture palate, improved terrain geometry, and updated interpretations of several archaeological loci. The new model also displays multiple phases of construction within the site over time.

Be sure to catch the new Qumran Digital Model and the Dead Sea Scrolls exhibition if you are in the Raleigh area!

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Digital Model of Qumran Enters Final Preparations for Release to Public

The Qumran Digital Model is currently in its final testing stages before its release to the public. The Qumran Digital Model is a 3D, realtime, virtual reconstruction of the archaeological remains of Khirbet Qumran, the site associated with the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls. Educators and enthusiasts will be able to download the virtual reality navigation software and the Qumran Digital Model to their Mac or PC and tour the ancient site during different phases of its existence. The model is being made available to the public free of charge.

The Qumran Digital Model is the product of a UCLA research project at the Department of Near Eastern Languages and Cultures, which has been working to digitally reconstruct the archaeological remains at Qumran since 2005. This project has already produced high definition movies and digital reconstructions for lectures, university courses, and museum exhibitions, including the 2007 Dead Sea Scrolls exhibit at the San Diego Natural History Museum.

Once the Qumran Digital Model completes its online testing, it will be released to the public. An announcement will be made informing users where they may download the model and instructions for its installation and navigation. Viewers may visit the Virtual Qumran website for more information.