QuickTime VR Anatomical Resource: A Library of Virtual Anatomical Objects for Gross Anatomy Educators

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Conference Proceeding

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The QuickTime VR object format has been successfully used to provide photorealistic representation of three dimensional anatomical structures. This technique creates the impression of holding a specimen and turning it for observation. The QTVR object metaphor can also be modified to interactively show other properties of a specimen such as internal movement or multiple levels of dissection. Our early efforts in producing QTVR anatomical objects has progressed into an on-line library of over 80 specimens, which can be accessed by educators, students and other interested parties through a password protected web site, the QTVR Anatomical Resource (www.anatomy.wright.edu/qtvr). The library is organized by object type: skeletal preparations; organs grouped by system; regional dissections; and miscellaneous specimens. The skeletal portion is most complete at this time with 55 objects including all of the major bones: skull including ear ossicles and hyoid; fetal skulls; bones of the axial skeleton; and bones of the limbs. Certain groups of bones are also shown assembled, such as the hand and foot and several bones are represented by more than one specimen to highlight individual variations. Isolated whole and partially dissected organs include the heart, brain, kidney, liver, spleen and testis. Several regional dissections are available: knee; hand at multiple levels; and head at multiple levels. All of the QTVR objects can be downloaded for use in classroom presentations, web pages or multimedia program development In addition to standard QTVR objects, we have recently implemented a different type of image format which facilitates high resolution virtual object distribution via an image streaming system. The usefulness of high resolution photo-realistic virtual objects, such as those made with QTVR technology is limited to some extent by the very large file sizes involved and hence lengthy downloads over typical Internet connections. With this image streaming system (Zoomify) the user can zoom in on a high resolution virtual object, downloading only the image data needed. The QTVRAR library includes Zoomify objects for certain specimens in addition to standard QTVR objects. In the two months since the release of the QTVRAR in January 2002, 270 users from 41 countries have registered for the password. The total number of object movies served to these users has been over 2300. (Supported by grant LM06924 from the National Library of Medicine).


Presented at the 6th Annual Meeting of the International Association of Medical Science Educators, Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico.