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Ilsenburg Abbey

Ilsenburg Abbey is a former Benedictine monastery in Saxony-Anhalt. When it was founded about 1000 years ago, it was one of the most important monasteries in the Harz region. The monastery's eventful history is marked by demolition, decay, fires, looting and the numerous restorations and reconstructions that followed.

Such a history leaves its traces and so the appearance of the monastery has changed a lot over time. In order to illustrate these changes and the original structure for visitors to Ilsenburg Abbey, an interactive 3D application has been installed on two touch screens inside the monastery. At these info points, visitors can interactively access information about the history of the monastery and see how its layout has changed over time. Several slideshows allow a virtual tour of the facilities and provide background information to let the history of the monastery come to life again.

The project was designed and implemented by a group of 6th semester media informatics students of the Harz University of Applied Sciences for the Ilsenburg Abbey Foundation. My area of responsibility within the group consisted of the technical realization as well as the implementation of the design concepts in Unity. For this, I focused in particular on touch controls, camera, user interfaces and programming.

In this project, with the areas of narrative, design, logic, concept and programming, many fields of activity intertwine in order to convey the history of the monastery on a visual level and present it in an appealing way for visitors. In addition, the project is a convincing example of how Unity can be used to create interactive 3D applications in non-game contexts.

The opening times of the monastery can be found on the official website. The interactive info points have been in use at Ilsenburg Abbey since August 2015.