For November 15, 2013: Through state of the art scanning methods, the Smithsonian is transforming their collection into 3D objects, and you can check it out at their Smithsonian X 3D website. These 3D images can be printed and manipulated by students using the keyboard and mouse. Be sure to read Getting Started on the home page. Students have a fascinating new view of museum artifacts that were once static. Examples include Amelia Earhart's Flight Suit, the Gunboat Philadelphia, and the Wright Flyer. Find out more information about the project by visiting the tours and video gallery with explanations about the technology being used to create these fascinating 3D renderings. Coming in the spring of 2014 is a free educational resource, Abraham Lincoln, the Mind Behind the Mask, which delves into historical thinking skills through interactive primary sources. Do not miss this revolutionary website.
There is also technical information you need to know in order to access the 3D site. On Windows the recommended browsers are Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox. At the time of writing this article, Microsoft Internet Explorer does not yet fully support 3D graphics. On OS X, Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox fully support the Smithsonian X 3D Explorer. Safari users need to enable WebGL first since it is disabled by default. You may also need to upgrade your graphics driver to use hardware acceleration and WebGL The Smithsonian Website guides you through these technical issues.
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