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Augmented reality project involving Microsoft brings Olympics birthplace to life

Microsoft [includes video]: “Digitally preserving and restoring Ancient Olympia as it stood over 2,000 years ago – Ancient Olympia is home to institutions and ideals that have shaped the world as we know it. Now, Ancient Olympia: Common Grounds—a new collaboration between the Hellenic Ministry of Culture and Sports and Microsoft—is harnessing AI to digitally preserve and restore this rich site for future generations by bringing its structures and cultural impact to life like never before. Visitors from around the world flock to Ancient Olympia to get a glimpse of its “ruins,” the material remains of its glorious past. But this archaeological site in Greece stands for much more than ancient history. The legacies that emerged from this cultural crossroads—from the ancient Olympic Games to art and architecture to civic ideals—remain as vivid and vital as ever. Today, 27 major monuments and many minor ones still stand in Ancient Olympia. Among them, the original Olympic Stadium. The temples of Zeus and Hera. The workshop of the renowned sculptor Phidias. These monuments survived thousands of years of weather, war, earthquakes, and modernization. They are meticulously conserved and restored by the Hellenic Ministry of Culture and Sports. But they are in need of digital preservation as well, to ensure that all the evidence of the rich history and civil common ground values that the site was built upon is handed over to future generations. That’s why the Hellenic Ministry of Culture and Sports is collaborating with Microsoft to create Common Grounds, a digital revival project that aims to preserve and restore valuable pieces of our past and empower global audiences to embrace the idea of finding common ground through our shared history. Now, with help from AI technology, viewers can explore Ancient Olympia as it stood in its glory more than 2,000 years ago with an immersive experience that allows fans of history, sports, arts, and culture to interact virtually with the buildings and artifacts from the historic site…”

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