Design Open Mic: Gregory Miller unearths digital fossils

Design Open Mic: Gregory Miller unearths digital fossils

  • by Architecture for Humanity
  • Feb 27, 2012
  • comments

The National Museum in Nairobi houses over 20,000 fossil specimens excavated from the Turkana Basin that are piecing together the ancestry of the human race. Problem is: it's very hard to catch a glimpse of these fossils. That's all starting to change.

Gregory Miller has played a critical role building a new tool for the field of archaeology. Working with Louise Leakey of Kenya's Turkana Basin Institute, Miller contributes an interactive devise suitable to revolutionize the study of fossils.

"Louise had this vision of creating a 3D museum...she wanted to see these things on an iPad." Greg explains how Autodesk software is building a precisely-detailed 3D collection.

The African Fossils digital museum replicates the Turkana Basin lab, a digital home for this growing virtual catalog. Still in early development, African Fossils offers a glimpse of the burgeoning 3D database. Greg relates how image capturing software 123D Catch creates digital objects capturing detail down to 3 microns.


A screen grab from africanfossils.org, portraying KNMER 1470. We think this is also the name of the asteroid where the Millennium Falcon hid from Imperial bombers.