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.
Long an SGI client, The FHW is utilizing visualization technology from Silicon Graphics for the development of its stunning virtual reality (VR) presentation. FHW has started designing the scenario and modeling the ancient buildings of the Agora on the Silicon Graphics Prism system, and will use the SGI system to add hyper-realistic graphics and superbly detailed animations to its VR datasets in preparation for final implementation.
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.