Home of Socrates recreated for today's audiences
- United Arab Emirates: Monday, October 17 - 2005 at 12:21
- PRESS RELEASE
Silicon Graphics Prism technology will be the driving force behind the immersive virtual tour of Agora, the heart of ancient Athens, to be launched at the non-profit Foundation of the Hellenic World's (FHW) innovative cultural center, Hellenic Cosmos in Athens, Greece.
Ancient Agora was the epicenter of public life, a site of political meetings and commercial transactions, administrative center, as well as judicial and religious nexus of the city. Socrates often met his disciples there, in the shade of the Stoa of Zeus Eleutherios. The ruins of the Agora can be visited today, below the hill where the Acropolis stands, but for the first time, visitors will be able to tour ancient Agora teeming with activity.
Artists and software developers at FHW are using the OpenGL framework introduced by SGI in 1992 for developing environments. The platform enables developers to incorporate a broad set of rendering, texture mapping, special effects and other powerful visualization functions, and provides a graphics pipeline allowing unfettered access to graphics hardware acceleration. The OpenGL Shading Language in the Silicon Graphics Prism visualization system allows FHW to recreate Agora with unprecedented realism.
"Museums and other interactive venues are discovering why professionals in the sciences, manufacturing and energy exploration fields have rapidly adopted the Silicon Graphics Prism system. SGI's shared memory architecture effortlessly delivers the required robustness for the most highly detailed visualization imaginable," said Gilbert Soufan, General Manager, SGI, Middle East and North Africa
The FHW opened three new exhibits last year, all powered by SGI visualization technology, including an immersive three dimensional tour of Ancient Olympia, birthplace of the Olympic Games, which has proved very successful. FHW also upgraded its visual facilities by the purchase of two Silicon Graphics Prism visualization systems, one with four graphics processor units, a compositor and four processors running the Linux environment, while the other incorporates a dual processor, dual graphics pipe setup for testing purposes.
"Silicon Graphics Prism systems are the only stand-alone machines in the market to offer this level of speed, shared memory, and graphics power, along with a compositor that allows assignation of projection quadrants. Such performance has historically been the preserve of painstakingly developed clusters, or groups of computers clumped together," added Soufan.
"SGI systems are renowned not just for raw graphic processing power, but also the flexibility and ease of use of their Linux interface that allows for the rapid creation and tailoring of graphics," he concluded.
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