Reflection of Our Project

For our project, we 3D scanned several artifacts from the James Monroe Museum including Monroe’s Desk, a bas relief of Monroe’s negotiations regarding the Louisiana Purchase, and many other of the Monroe family’s personal possessions. It was really cool and fun to have the opportunity to work up close and personal with Jarod Kearney, the curator of the museum, and all of these objects. We got a behind the scenes look at many of them, which is an experience not many people get to have. To scan these objects, we learned how to use several different innovative tools and programs including Makerbot, Scanect, and Sketchfab. As interesting as it was to use these tools, technology was our biggest obstacle to completing our project. Due to these problems, we became good friends with Tim Owens of DTLT who’s help with these issues was invaluable. Our technology issues were the primary reason that we struggled to meet some our milestones stated in our contract. Thankfully, we anticipated that we would have some trouble, so we had contingency dates that we were able to meet. A vast majority of the time we spent on our project was during our several trips to the museum to scan. The scans take a good portion of time and are very easy to disrupt, so it was necessary to rescan just about every object. The scanners, the Makerbot in particular, are very sensitive, so anything that did not sit just right in the lasers, or was too shiny, or was not the right size were difficult to scan. The peace medal had each of these issues, so unfortunately we could not scan it. Due to the requirements of the scanners, we were not able to scan each of the original objects stated in our contract. We circumvented this problem by choosing some different objects.
As far as the individual responsibilities, non of the jobs stated in our contract went unfinished. Thanks to Ike, the timeline is completed and accurate, thanks to Victoria, the scans are all on the site and look excellent, I had the pleasure of interviewing Jarod and embedding the videos onto the site, and thanks to Amanda, everything on the site is consistent and looks professional. The primary part of our project was to scan the objects and put them online. The point of it is to enhance the museum experience and to be able to interact with some of the objects without even having to leave your desk. I mentioned that we could not scan all of the objects we originally hoped to scan, but we still fulfilled our contract by replacing the problem artifacts with others that worked. By working around the issues with technology, we completed everything by at least our back up dates, and accomplished what we set out to do in our contract. I think the four of us can now brag that we know James Monroe better than any of our friends.

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