Virtual reality app lets you visit 16th century Edinburgh

Virtual reality (VR) lets you take a peek into Edinburgh’s historic past. Edinburgh 1544 is the first digital reconstruction of the Scottish capital in the early sixteenth century.

Researchers from the University of St Andrews in the UK have developed a virtual reality app that lets visitors explore Scotland’s capital city Edinburgh and its surrounding landscape as it may have been in the 16th century.

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This seems to be another area where Virtual Reality can play an important role. Using your mobile phone and a VR headset, you can become virtual time-travellers and immerse yourself in historic scenes, stereoscopic video and 360 degree images.



‘Virtual Time Binoculars: Edinburgh 1544’ provides a unique window into the capital around the time of the birth of Mary, Queen of Scots. Guided virtual tours of the Royal Mile will allow virtual time travellers to compare Edinburgh’s past to its present.

“It is striking how the cityscape is both familiar and different from the city today. Instead of the new town there stands a great loch yet the castle stands guard over the city much as it does now,” said Sarah Kennedy, Digital Designer of the University of St Andrews’s spinout company Smart History.

“The Virtual Time Binoculars project is ground breaking for digital reconstruction because it uses technology already in people’s pockets. We have had interest from across Europe and Latin America, so we expect our Virtual Time travel platform to go global,” said Alan Miller, Director of Smart History.

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