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2 July 2007

Bibliotheca Alexandrina and IBM Egypt Launch the Great Sphinx Visualization Project

Today, Bibliotheca Alexandrina (BA) will host the launch of the Great Sphinx Visualization project. The project is a result of mutual collaboration between BA and IBM based on research work conducted at IBM Center for Advanced Studies in Cairo. IBM Center studied the effect of low speed wind and pressure over the Great Sphinx. The visualization was done by the International School of Information Science (ISIS) team at BA backlogged with sufficient data provided by IBM.

For the first time, the visualization demonstration will be presented with a comprehensive illustration about the project phases. The demonstration will be attended by Dr. Ismail Serageldin, Director of Bibliotheca Alexandrina and Mr. Amr Ghoneim, General Manager of IBM Egypt as well as several other members of senior management from IBM and BA.

This project falls within the framework of cooperation between BA and IBM in applications of immersive virtual reality technology and high performance computing. The collaboration took place in accordance with BA’s efforts in promoting science and technology, contributing to scientific studies and research, as well as paving the way to researchers and scientists for continuous development and knowledge.

Trying to achieve its goals, in 2006 BA took the lead in installing the first Middle Eastern Computer Aided Virtual Environment (CAVE) system called Virtual Immersive Science and Technology Applications (VISTA). The VISTA walk-in virtual reality system enables interactive work within three-dimensional computer-generated models and environments. With virtual reality, or immersive visualization, researchers are able to experience simulations of natural or human-engineered phenomena in a way that provides new insights and understanding. Often eliminating the need for physical models, work within virtual environments has been shown to save time and resources in both commercial and scientific research.

The Bibliotheca Alexandrina, the New Library of Alexandria, was inaugurated in 2002 and is dedicated to recapturing the spirit of the ancient Library of Alexandria, a center of world learning from 300 B.C. to A.D. 400, by serving as a center of excellence in the production and dissemination of knowledge through the use of digital technologies.

The IBM Center for Advanced Studies in Cairo supports research and development through collaboration between IBM and other research centers and academic and governmental Institutions in Egypt and abroad.