Saturday 8 October 2011

3D PDF for archaeology

Today I am preparing the presentation for the meeting in Ferrara (see the previous post), so I did some experiments with 3D PDF. I think this kind of documentation has good potentialities in archaeology. To test them I took some old data (the 3D skull done with Sfm and IBM techniques), I build the surface in Meshlab and with the same software I saved an u3d file. Then, with the help of Kyle, I wrote a (very) simple 3d document. The result is the image below. As you can see, to visualize my 3d PDF I had to virtualize Windows inside my VritualBox and run Adobe Reader. Up to now I did not find a pdf reader for Linux which is able to visualize u3d, so if you know one, please let me know...

Anyway, if you want to visualize the result, you can download the file here.


  1. Did you try with all these software:

  2. Yes, with the exception of Vindaloo and Sumatra PDF, of course. But i did it some months ago, maybe something changed in the meantime (or i missed something), so if you want to try again would be nice (it is always better a double check). I will send you soon the data to try. Ciao.

  3. Anyway, to start to try with the pdf readers, you can just download the 3d pdf from the link in the post. If you want to do some more experiments with the Latex code, i will write soon a new post and upload the tex and the u3d file. Ciao.

  4. Apparently Movie 15 LaTeX package can only be read by Adobe Acrobat Reader.

    This package looks very promising. 3D models and video content can be very useful in archaeological pdf papers.


  5. Hi Luca,

    I'm doing similar research here in Canada. Has anyone found an open GL viewer that is web based? I have found that the latest version of Acrobat still does not fully integrate texture maps and I was hoping to by-pass this completely by allowing researchers to upload files to a web based GL viewer instead.

    Cheers, mcarter

  6. Hi Ricardo,
    thank you for the post.
    Yes i read the documentation of the movie15 package and looks like that there is no chance to see 3D with a free PDF reader, but i am wondering if something has changed in the last 2 years (the documentation was written in july 2009). Anyway by now i did not find anything... Let's hope in the next months/years :)


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