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Merging History with Modern Technology – An Exhibition at the Hobe Mackay Hospital

DATE 2018/11/21 VISITORS 739

From the beginning of 2018, Tamkang University has been working to implement various programs under the University Social Responsibility (USR) initiative, a scheme that encourages universities to expand outward and assist the local community, restoring dilapidated areas and helping those in need.

As part of the USR initiative, on Nov 17, 2018 Tamkang University held an exhibition at the Hobe Mackay Hospital. The exhibition took visitors back in time, allowing them to experience what it was like to have one's tooth pulled by Dr. George Leslie Mackay, a dentist and famous missionary who ran a dental practice in the late 19th century out of Tamsui, where he later established churches, schools, and a hospital.

The exhibition drew on and utilized virtual reality and augmented reality, two domains that have become increasingly prevalent in recent times. It was organized by Lin Chia-Chi, an assistant professor with the TKU Department of History, who led a group of history students to the Hobe Mackay Hospital to photograph and capture footage within the historical site. They then converted this into virtual and augmented reality, affording visitors an eerily realistic insight into what it was like to be treated by Dr. Mackay.

Many visitors were impressed by the virtual scene, exclaiming: "How interesting!" or "That looks painful!" or "Look at all the patients waiting in line!"

To help students get the hang of producing virtual reality scenes, Assistant Professor Lin Jun-Hsien first put them through a VR training course. Students then went ahead and wrote the script to be used in the scene dialogues, captured the appropriate footage, edited it and then rendered it using VR technology, thus creating the perfect synthesis between modern technology and history.