|Institution:||University of the Arts London|
|Full text PDF:||http://ualresearchonline.arts.ac.uk/8749/|
In cultural heritage, the documentation of artefacts can be both iconographic and textual, i.e. both pictures and drawings on the one hand, and text and words on the other are used for documentation purposes. This research project aims to produce a methodology to transform automatically verbal descriptions of material objects, with a focus on bookbinding structures, into standardized and scholarly-sound visual representations. In the last few decades, the recording and management of documentation data about material objects, including bookbindings, has switched from paper-based archives to databases, but sketches and diagrams are a form of documentation still carried out mostly by hand. Diagrams hold some unique information, but often, also redundant information already secured through verbal means within the databases. This project proposes a methodology to harness verbal information stored within a database and automatically generate visual representations. A number of projects within the cultural heritage sector have applied semantic modelling to generate graphic outputs from verbal inputs. None of these has considered bookbindings and none of these relies on information already recorded within databases. Instead they develop an extra layer of modelling and typically gather more data, specifically for the purpose of generating a pictorial output. In these projects qualitative data (verbal input) is often mixed with quantitative data (measurements, scans, or other direct acquisition methods) to solve the problems of indeterminateness found in verbal descriptions. Also, none of these projects has attempted to develop a general methodology to ascertain the minimum amount ii of information that is required for successful verbal-to-visual transformations for material objects in other fields. This research has addressed these issues. The novel contributions of this research include: (i) a series of methodological recommendations for successful automated verbal-to-visual intersemiotic translations for material objects — and bookbinding structures in particular — which are possible when whole/part relationships, spatial configurations, the object’s logical form, and its prototypical shapes are communicated; (ii) the production of intersemiotic transformations for the domain of bookbinding structures; (iii) design recommendations for the generation of standardized automated prototypical drawings of bookbinding structures; (iv) the application — never considered before — of uncertainty visualization to the field of the archaeology of the book. This research also proposes the use of automatically generated diagrams as data verification tools to help identify meaningless or wrong data, thus increasing data accuracy within databases.