CyArk, located in Oakland, California, is a nonprofit organization with the mission of “digitally preserving cultural heritage sites through collecting, archiving and providing open access to data created by laser scanning, digital modeling, and other state-of-the-art technologies.” CyArk was founded in 2003 by Iraqi expatriate and civil engineer Ben Kacyra. Kacyra was instrumental in the invention and marketing of the first truly portable laser scanner (called the Cyrax) designed for surveying purposes during the 1990s. After Kacyra’s company (Cyra Technologies) and all rights to the invention were purchased by Swiss firm Leica Geosystems in 2001, Kacyra dedicated his energy to the application of the new technology to the documentation of archaeological and cultural heritage resources through CyArk. CyArk’s primary focus is the documentation and digital preservation of threatened ancient and historical architecture found at sites around the world such Rapa Nui (Easter Island), the San Antonio missions in Texas, Pompeii, and the Sydney Opera House.
See Ben Kacyra's presentation at TEDGlobal.