3-D Rome in 21 Hours

There's an old adage that says "Rome was not built in a day," but a team of researchers at the University of Washington's Graphics and Imaging Laboratory (GRAIL) recently created a virtual Rome in 21 hours using 150,000 panoramic images from the popular user-generated Web site, Flickr.

The project -- described in a research paper presented at the 2009 International Conference on Computer Vision in Kyoto, Japan -- pioneered a method for solving large-scale distributed computer vision problems.

GRAIL researchers developed a new system that uses parallel processing to rapidly match the huge number of individual images that were needed to create the detailed 3-D rendering.

Electronic Weatherproof Protection

Government agencies that spend millions of dollars replacing weather-damaged equipment can sigh with relief, thanks to a new coating process called Golden Shellback, developed by the Northeast Maritime Institute. The coating produces a vacuum deposited film that's nonflammable, has low toxicity and can make electronic devices and other surfaces splash-proof. The process is specifically designed to protect devices commonly used in marine and hazardous environments against damage caused by exposure to moisture, immersion in water, dust, effects of high wind and chemicals. -- Northeast Maritime Institute

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Karen Stewartson, Managing Editor Karen Stewartson  | 

Karen Stewartson served as the managing editor of Government Technology for many years. She also contributed to Public CIO and Emergency Management magazines.