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Where past is future

eHeritage InitiativeThe Microsoft Research Asia eHeritage program supports collaborative research projects with academia in the Asia-Pacific region. These projects apply advanced technology to the digitization, preservation, and dissemination of cultural heritage. The eHeritage program has funded more than 10 research proposals over the past several years. Learn more...

Feature Stories

Beijing Lab's eHeritage Initiative

Mao Kung TingThe 3000-year-old Mao Kung Ting Lolan Song, senior director of the Microsoft External Research Division for Microsoft Research Asia (known in the Asia-Pacific region as the University Relations group), has joined Baining Guo, assistant managing director of Microsoft Research Asia, in spearheading the eHeritage effort. eHeritage aims to use computing technology to assist and partner with the academic community in the Asia Pacific region as they explore, preserve, enhance the priceless human and natural heritage of Asia. Learn more...

Dunhuang Study: Clicking through A Thousand Years

Dunhuang ManuscriptsDunhuang ManuscriptsThe Dunhuang Manuscripts, discovered in the early 1900s, form a huge collection of ancient documents and cultural materials that have provided unprecedented insight for researchers on the history and civilization of China and the world. However, due to the scattered housing of the original artifacts in multiple locations and the documents’ deterioration, it has been difficult for scholars to access the documents for convenient reference. Microsoft Research Asia collaborated with Zhejiang University to develop the Dun-huang Document Database System that provides an online encyclopedia on Dunhuangology with a user-friendly search engine. Learn more...

Research and Projects

Innovative research and carefully selected projects focus on preserving cultural heritage and advancing multidisciplinary research worldwide. Representative projects, such as those described below, are ongoing.

Semantic Annotation Services

Semantic Annotation Services: Cultural heritage institutions are increasingly using 3D digital preservation techniques to preserve fragile museum artifacts and to develop virtual online collections.

Low-cost Image-based Rendering System

Low-Cost Image-Based Rendering System: A low-cost system that can efficiently reconstruct 3D geometry of objects from photos, and render them in a virtual environment with absolute photo-realism will be proposed.

Capture and Reassemble Fractured Heritage Objects

Capture and Reassemble Fractured Heritage Objects: We will build a capture doom for scanning the shape and appearance of heritage artwork

Image-based Large-scale Monuments Modeling

Image-Based Large-scale Monuments Modeling: We focus on the quasi-dense approach that we have been developing for many years.

All funded projects...

Related Resources

Take advantage of Microsoft resources to aid the cultural heritage for research, education, and protection, including groups, publications, and technologies.


GroupsGroups participating in the eHeritage Program in Microsoft Research Asia conduct fundamental, curiosity-driven research. Groups presented are those that work closely with the eHeritage program and our partners in the funded projects.


PublicationsPublications on eHeritage Program describe the latest advanced computing technologies for preservation of cultural heritage. Authored by Microsoft Research Asia, many of the ideas and tools in these publications have been adopted by the eHeritage projects and partners.


Building on the existing technologies provided by Microsoft for eHeritage, today we are in a position to both showcase and preserve the glory of the world’s heritage for future generations.

HD View 

HD View: Recent advances in camera and sensor technology and software for stitching images together has led to the creation of composite images containing billions of pixels (gigapixels). HD View is a new viewer developed by Microsoft Research's Interactive Visual Media group to aid in the display of, and interaction with, these very large images. 


Virtual Earth Virtual Earth (SDK): This platform enables developers to create immersive experiences for desktop or mobile applications incorporating high-resolution map detail, aerial imagery, bird’s eye views, and 3D city models. 



Photosynth: This entirely new visual medium analyzes a set of photos of a place or an object for overlap and mutual similarities, estimates where a photo was taken, and synthesizes a graphical model of the subject. It then re-creates the environment and uses that as a canvas on which to display the photos.  



Silverlight: This free runtime module delivers high quality, interactive video across multiple platforms and browsers, using the Microsoft .NET Framework.