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Brigham Young University & University of Melbourne Reconstruct Ancient Jerusalem Through VR [Video]

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Old Holy City
The Old City is seen from the Mount of Olives on January 13 in Jerusalem, Israel. Brigham Young University and University of Melbourne reconstructed this place based on how it looked like before and during the time of Jesus Christ through VR.
(Photo : Photo by Chris McGrath/Getty Images)

Simon Young, an archaeology doctoral student at the University of Melbourne, developed an app that shows a 3D virtual (VR) view of the ancient Jerusalem. On the other hand, a group of nearly three dozen people from Brigham Young University reconstructed Jerusalem in the New Testament era,

Foremost, Young of the University of Melbourne named the program as "Lithodomos VR". It is a paid android app, worth $1.99, launched on Google Play last December. For the record, it sells for about $3 on the Apple App Store.

In it, the Western Wall is featured along the Jewish Temple as perceived by Herod I, probably around 74 B.C to 4 B.C. The Temple Mount in the Lithodomos VR resembles its original appearance before its destruction in A.D. 70. The fall of the said structure was caused bu the Jewish Revolt against the Romans.

Aside from the Ancient Wall, Live Science reported that Lithodomos VR also showcases ancient markets and houses based on real excavations. Moreover, some ceramics and street furniture were patterned on data from first-century artifacts in Israeli museums. Lithodomos has a second app, a free version, on Google Play featuring the Odeon of Agrippa in Athens, the Arena of Lutece in Paris, and the Temple of Venus in Rome.

Young reportedly learned 3D-modeling by himself as part of his studies on the architecture of ancient cities. He began experimenting with it when the Oculus Rift headset hit the market. Three months ago, his project received $900,000 AUD in funding to expand the range of archaeological sites it can cover.

On the other hand, Deseret News learns that Brigham Young University (BYU) developers created a different app that shows Jerusalem during the time of Jesus Christ. They are from the Virtual Scriptures Group of BYU and the services department of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Unlike Lithodomos VR, this app is free on Apple App Store and Google Play.

The BYU 3D-modeling shows the courtyards of Herod's Temple and even a bird's eye view of the whole city. Otherwise known as the "Virtua New Testament" app, it also features "info dots". These dots are details that connect one particular area to the life of Christ.

© 2017 University Herald, All rights reserved. Do not reproduce without permission.

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