The Dodo Goes Digital: Aves 3D

PhysOrg.Com has an interesting item about about the 3D scanning of the dodo:

Claessens said the dodo skeleton, which was assembled of collected bones rather than those from a single individual, is one of just a handful — perhaps 10 — known around the world. That rarity makes it an important addition to the digital database. Having a digital model of rare skeletons will provide a backup should the original deteriorate or be damaged.

A picture of the scanned dodo is below:

Dodo 1
Scanning the dodo is part of an ongoing project:

The National Science Foundation-funded, three-year effort aims to create 3-D digital models of each species represented in Harvard’s collection of 12,000 bird skeletons. It will make those digital models available on the Internet for researchers around the world. The collection’s digitization will not only vastly expand access to the collections for researchers who can’t afford to travel to Cambridge, it will also make analysis of the specimens far more rapid, using powerful engineering software that creates thousands of data points on each bone that can be manipulated, measured, and used in calculations.
“This project will be useful for people studying the basic morphology of birds,” Edwards said. “In this era of genomics, the size and shape of bones is still very important.”

The project is called Aves 3D and has a website that is still under construction. One thing that has been added are these x-ray films of various birds breathing.
This is something that was recently done to Lucy and you can find a number of primates at DigiMorph, but wouldn’t it be great if the NSF funded a project to do this to all the hominin fossils and then after that all the primate fossils…
Check them out

One Response

  1. And eventually all fossils? Hey, it’s a dream, but it’s a nice dream.

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