Tips and Tricks

Using 3D-ID

Now you can digitize directly into 3D-ID by using Revware's MicroScribe Utility Software Tool (MUS) 7

We have recently found that there is much inter-observer error with the following samples and thus suggest to exclude them completely from the analysis: R/L mastoidale, R/L ectomalare, R upper and lower orbits, and prosthion. You may also want to omit R/L nasomaxillary suture pinch.

Importing Data

The following describes several different ways that data can be imported into 3D-ID.

    • UPDATE: Data can be directly collected into 3D-ID using a MicroScribe digitizer using the MUS software that is included with the hardware.


    • Data can be collected in an excel spreadsheet and then imported into 3D-ID.
    • We have uploaded an Excel spreadsheet template to assist the user in collecting and importing 3D landmarks from an unknown individual. It is available at the bottom of this page.
      • Collect X, Y, and Z coordinates in the template provided using a digitizer (Figure 1).
      • Delete Landmark abbreviations so that only the X, Y, and Z coordinates are present (see template for special notes about what rows to leave blank) (Figures 1 & 2).
      • Save as -->Text (tab delimited) (Figure 2).
      • To Import: Open 3DID --> Program --> Read Data --> Change file type to “All Files” --> Select data file and open.


    • Data can also be copied and pasted directly into 3D-ID.
    • If you are unable to collect all landmarks from your unknown case, leave those missing landmark fields blank and proceed with the analysis.

Figure 1. Excel Template for Data Collection.

Figure 2. Save coordinates only. Be sure to leave blank rows where appropriate.

Running Analysis

Due to differences in data collection, some landmarks were not initially collected by the original observer and therefore not available for inclusion in the reference database. Additionally, some landmarks were not included in the reference database due to landmark definition differences. The following tips will explain which landmarks to exclude from your analysis to increase the reference population samples.

For ALL analyses:

  • To increase sample sizes, do not include the right eye orbit coordinates (Shown in Figures 1, 2, & 3).
    • Right_lower_orbital_border
    • Right_upper_orbital_border

Figure 3. Do not include right eye orbits.

For analyses containing European and Brazilian samples

  • To increase sample reference sizes for the European and Brazilian populations, exclude the following landmarks from the analysis.
    • (R/L) ectoconchion, (R/L) lower and upper orbits, opisthion, subspinale, and (R/L) nasomaxillary suture pinch.

For analyses containing Mesoamerican samples

  • To increase sample reference sizes for Mexican data exclude the following landmarks from the analysis.
  • (R/L) ectomalare, (R/L) lower and upper orbits, (R/L) frontomalare temporale, (R/L) mastoidale, (R/L) subspinale, (R/L) zygomaxillare, (R/L) zygoorbitale.