Toward an Automated Pipeline for a Browser-Based, City-Scale Mobile 4D VR Application Based on Historical Images

Research output: Contribution to book/conference proceedings/anthology/reportConference contributionContributedpeer-review


The process for automatically creating 3D city models from contemporary photographs and visualizing them on mobile devices is well established. 4D city models that can display a temporal dimension are far more complex to generate automatically. In this article, we focus on major challenges in the process of developing an automated pipeline, starting from content-based image retrieval applied to historical images, via automatic historical image orientation, up to visualization of the 4D data in Virtual Reality (VR). The result is an interactive browser-based device-rendered 4D visualization and information system for mobile devices. This pipeline has been in development since 2015. In this article, we present initial results and early-stage findings in the process of overcoming three major challenges on the way to 4D city models: (1) to identify photographs with corresponding views, (2) to reconstruct the position and orientation of photographs and (3) to design a user-centered, browser-based 4D mobile application.


Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationResearch and Education in Urban History in the Age of Digital Libraries
EditorsFlorian Niebling, Sander Münster, Heike Messemer
Place of PublicationCham
PublisherSpringer International Publishing AG
Number of pages23
ISBN (print)978-3-030-93186-5
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2021

External IDs

Scopus 85123446923
ORCID /0000-0001-8338-6372/work/142233361
ORCID /0000-0003-2684-102X/work/142255218
ORCID /0000-0002-2456-9731/work/153654806