Excavation is Destruction Digitization: Advances in Archaeological Practice

  title={Excavation is Destruction Digitization: Advances in Archaeological Practice},
  author={Christopher H. Roosevelt and Peter J. Cobb and Emanuel Moss and Brandon R. Olson and Sinan {\"U}nl{\"u}soy},
  journal={Journal of Field Archaeology},
  pages={325 - 346}
Abstract This article modifies an old archaeological adage—“excavation is destruction”—to demonstrate how advances in archaeological practice suggest a new iteration: “excavation is digitization.” Digitization, in a fully digital paradigm, refers to practices that leverage advances in onsite, image-based modeling and volumetric recording, integrated databases, and data sharing. Such practices were implemented in 2014 during the inaugural season of the Kaymakçı Archaeological Project (KAP) in… Expand
Digitizing the Undigitized: Converting Traditional Archaeological Records into Computerized, Three-Dimensional Site Reconstruction
Archaeological excavation involves disintegration, removal, and reassembly of the archaeological record; as such it is considered by many to be an unrepeatable, destructive activity. This perceptionExpand
New technology and archaeological practice. Improving the primary archaeological recording process in excavation by means of UAS photogrammetry
A new, well-defined, transparent and standardized mapping approach based on the combination of a budget UAS and straightforward photogrammetrical techniques, fully embedded in the workflow of knowledge production in archaeological excavation is proposed. Expand
Born-Digital Logistics: Impacts of 3D Recording on Archaeological Workflow, Training, and Interpretation
Abstract Digital technologies have been at the heart of fieldwork at the Kaymakçı Archaeological Project (KAP) since its beginning in 2014. All data on this excavation are born-digital, from textual,Expand
Reconfiguring the 3D excavation archive. Technological shift and data remix in the archaeological project of Paliambela Kolindros, Greece
Abstract Recent advances in recording equipment, software solutions and intra-site applications have supported the widespread integration of 3D spatial technologies within archaeological fieldwork.Expand
The Digital Revolution to Come: Photogrammetry in Archaeological Practice
The three-dimensional (3D) revolution promised to transform archaeological practice. Of the technologies that contribute to the proliferation of 3D data, photogrammetry facilitates the rapid andExpand
A Critique of Archaeological Reason: Structural, Digital, and Philosophical Aspects of the Excavated Record
In A Critique of Archaeological Reason, Giorgio Buccellati presents a theory of excavation that aims at clarifying the nature of archaeology and its impact on contemporary thought. IntegratingExpand
Establishing Best Practices for Photogrammetric Recording During Archaeological Fieldwork
ABSTRACT Archaeologists have recently embraced photogrammetry as a low-cost, efficient tool for recording archaeological artifacts, active excavation contexts, and architectural remains. However, noExpand
The Impact of Structure from Motion on Archaeological Fieldwork Practice: Experiences of the Via Consolare Project in Pompeii
  • 2021
The last decade of advances in Image-Based Modeling (IBM) data acquisition based on Structure from Motion (SfM) have made it possible as never before to record excavated archaeological deposits,Expand
Going from Analogue to Digital: A Study of Documentation Methods during an Excavation of the Neolithic Flint Mines at Pilbladet, Sweden
During the latest excavation in 2014 of the Neolithic flint mines of Sodra Sallerup, in Malmo in southern Sweden, several recording methods were used to document the remains in plan, including hand drawing, digital mapping with GPS and digital photography using a camera mounted on a pole. Expand
Filling the Void in Archaeological Excavations: 2D Point Clouds to 3D Volumes
Abstract 3D data captured from archaeological excavations are frequently left to speak for themselves. 3D models of objects are uploaded to online viewing platforms, the tops or bottoms of surfacesExpand


Data Publishing and Archaeology's Information Ecosystem
Archaeologists increasingly employ various digital tools in the documentation of fieldwork and post-excavation analysis. In doing so, they create vast amounts of data. Archaeologists need to createExpand
Techniques of archaeological excavation
This chapter discusses the techniques of archaeological excavation. It is seen as one of the more recent forms of that passion, and the history of excavation methods reflects the changing attitudesExpand
Photogrametry has been used in archaeology for the recording of complex structures. Therefore, the use of those techniques is more frequent in medieval and classic archaeologies. In those cases theExpand
On introducing an image-based 3D reconstruction method in archaeological excavation practice
The results suggest that image-based 3D modeling can be an excellent and suitable method for the recording, documentation and visualization of the excavated archaeological heritage and can cause a(n) (r)evolution in archaeological excavation practice. Expand
ArchField in Jordan: Real-Time GIS Data Recording for Archaeological Excavations
In this paper, we present ArchField, a GIS data recording solution that has the potential to enable any archaeological project to inexpensively adopt realtime 3D digital recording techniques. TheExpand
The Tel Akko Total Archaeology Project (Akko, Israel): Assessing the suitability of multi-scale 3D field recording in archaeology
Abstract Archaeology is a destructive discipline, and, unfortunately, the majority of methods employed by archaeologists to record and preserve the archaeological record consist of two-dimensionalExpand
Mobilizing Archaeologists
  • A. Austin
  • Computer Science
  • Advances in Archaeological Practice
  • 2014
In this article, existing methods and practices for integrating data collection on mobile devices are reviewed in order to evaluate the costs and feasibility of transitioning to a mobile-based data collection system. Expand
Integrating geomatics in archaeological research at the site of Thorikos (Greece)
An integrated workflow of topographic measurements and image-based 3D modelling is used to generate highly accurate reconstructions of archaeological features at the site of Thorikos, Greece, to demonstrate the huge potential of 3D data for archaeological research. Expand
Digital Archaeological Fieldwork and the Jezreel Valley Regional Project, Israel
The application of digital technologies to enhance archaeological documentation has long been a priority of researchers around the world. However, progress on this front has been generally restrictedExpand
A 3D Model of an Archaeological Excavation
We think that archaeological fieldwork can be enhanced by using Virtual Reality techniques and 3D graphical models. In this paper, we present how to acquire 3D data from the field, and the process ofExpand