The Budapest Sun, April 14, 2005 - Volume XIII, Issue 15

Aquincum's time machine

By Eszter Balázs

AMID the highest secrecy, the Aquincum Museum has installed among its Roman ruins a tool they call a "chronoscope", intended to help visualize how the ruins used to look during the times of Provincia Pannonia between the 1st and 5th centuries AD.

Looking into the two devices, visitors will see how the town appeared in Roman times: part of the virtual picture will be present-day trees, bushes, roads, while the old stones will be replaced by the view of the old buildings.

The software behind the view takes into consideration the light conditions of the surroundings, and provides music accompaniment. Virtual reality accompanies the physical environment to help the imagination. The chronoscope (now going through the patenting process) was developed by the IT research branch of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences (SZTAKI) together with the Hungarian representation of the American company Silicon Graphics. The Aquincum Museum re-opens for the summer tomorrow (Friday, April 15), when the mysterious chronoscopes are to be unveiled.


Aquincum Museum
Buda, District III, Szentendrei út 139.
Hours: 9am-5pm, closed on Monday,
from April 15

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