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Students Win Build Your Campus in 3D Contest

A team of Dartmouth students recently became one of seven out of 350 entrants to win Google's Build Your Campus in 3D Competition. "People from around the world can now tour the Dartmouth campus in Google Earth," says Lorie Loeb, faculty adviser to the group and research assistant professor of computer science. "I'm incredibly proud of this team."

3D Image
Image courtesy of Google

Jessica Glago '08 led the effort to digitize and virtually reconstruct more than 130 campus buildings. She took more than a thousand pictures of campus buildings from every conceivable angle. The students then digitally recreated the structures using Google SketchUp, a 3-D computer modeling tool. They then used the Google Earth mapping program to place them on the campus. Team member Stephanie Trudeau '09 says the team modeled "everything from the Boathouse to the Sphinx."

Jennifer Huang '09 says that this project was the best part of her spring term. Gemma Ross '08 agrees, but acknowledges that sleep was sometimes sacrificed to get the entry in on time. "The excitement and sense of achievement made it all worth it," she says.

Bill Nisen '73, alumni representative for the project, provided help with research on the origins of the buildings and says the team's achievement is a sign of good things to come. "Dartmouth is uniquely positioned to use this project as a catalyst for becoming a center of excellence in 'hypergeography' ... As a society, we have moved to a context where location is as easy to tell as time."

Members of the Dartmouth team are: Ari Bezman '07, Nathan Chung '07, Yasemin Elci '07, Jessica Glago '08, Daniel Gobaud '10, Jennifer Huang '09, David Heinicke '08, Hari Iyer '09, Samuel Kohn '09, Amanda Lobel '09, Yoon-Ki Park '09, Gemma Ross '08, and Stephanie Trudeau '09. Tim Tregubov, computer systems specialist in the Department of Computer Science, also participated.

The team's effort was sponsored by the Department of Computer Science and the digital arts minor, and supported by funding from Borealis Ventures and Dartmouth's William H. Neukom 1964 Institute for Computational Science.

By SUSAN KNAPP

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Last Updated: 5/30/08