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Blaise Aguera y Arcas: The technology behind Photosynth

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PhotoSynth is a technology that automatically combines 2D photos into an immersive 3D environment.

With the official release of Photosynth, we catch up with Blaise Aguera y Arcas, one of the Photosynth architects to talk about the technology and team that powers


More Photosynth love:
Laura Foy's 3-minute overview on Photosynth
- Nic Fillingham's Photosynth Shutter Speed episode
- Max Zuckerman interviews Noah Snavely, who originally created the Photosynth project while a student at the University of Washington

Also, for an in depth look into the technologies addressed here, see the Photosynth Going Deep from 2006 with Blaise.

Follow the Discussion

  • CharlesCharles Welcome Change
    Great to see Blaise again! Funny, he doesn't seem to age. Smiley
  • HarlequinHarlequin http:/​/​twitter.​com/True​Harlequin
    Any word on when the photosynth.net website will be 100%? I got a days worth of it just not running at all, and now when signing up it just sends to an error page. At least I'm finally getting the install downloading Smiley

    Edit:
    Here's our house
    http://photosynth.net/view.aspx?cid=9AD9A8F8-9D6A-4747-9D21-B29EEE578A53

    Not sure about every else, but I get a bit dizzy while using the plugin and moving around. Would have been nice if you could just do it locally on your computer without having to upload them, since it seems to do all the processing on your computer.
  • Joshua RossJoshRoss Drinking Ovaltine since 2004
    He might not age, but he certainly doesn't shave.  Maybe it's a release beard, the kind hockey players grow during the playoffs.  Except instead of waiting for the Stanley cup, he is eagerly awaiting the release of Seadragon!  It was cool to see him and the world wide telescope folks at TED.
  • Well I'm impressed by anybody who can work on something like Photosynth, and still find time to head up the Foo Fighters.
  • Allan LindqvistaL_ Kinect ftw
    thats just awsome.. any chance we could program against this? i would looooove to use it for to create 3d models and export to maya or max or something :O

    ultra cheap and fast rotoscoping, fast digitalisation of 3d objects, it boggles the mind.. Smiley

    a dll would be awsome Smiley
  • I'm having the same problem with this that I'm having with a bunch of things, the site thinks I don't have Photosynth installed even though I already do so it keeps asking me to install it.
    It's the same with Virtual Earth 3D, many sites that use Flash and the SkyDrive uploader. They keep telling me I need to install the software/plug-in even though I obviously already do.
    There's a few others but I can't remember them right now and others that are completely mysterious becasue they don't tell me what they are like when I go to Facebook sometimes and the yellow bar pops up and tells me my security settings do not allow me to run activex controls and when I click on it it just says "More information".

    I've been putting off re-installing my OS because I hate setting up everything again but it's definitely time.

    I know this has nothing to do with Photosynth (which is amazing! by the way) but it was just another example of the problem I'm having and how I dislike re-installing an OS to fix a mystery problem Smiley
  • BasBas It finds lightbulbs.
    Right now, the experience is horrible. I've only just signed in, downloaded the synther, and watched a single synth. I've had numerous 404's, a bunch of timeouts, and now the entire site is offline.

    I love Photosynth, but... what is this, MobileMe?

    Anyway, great video. Blaise is really good at conveying how stuff works in a very clear way. And I like how you guys are casually sitting next to the Surface machine. "Oh yeah, that old thing. We needed a coffee table, so.."

    And is Dan picking up Charles' "Interesting", or what? Tongue Out
  • ivan_ivan_ g
    What is up with Russian T-shirt?

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:Coat_of_Arms_of_the_Russian_Federation.svg
  • ZippyVZippyV Fired Up
    Stereo microphone?
  • Dan FernandezDan

    Personal aside on the t-shirt, I like ice hockey, I like Russian hockey (Dynamo ftw), and Russia was fascinating when I went there pre-Sovient Union break up.

  • Joshua RossJoshRoss Drinking Ovaltine since 2004
    I've watched the first 3 seconds at least 10 times in a row and I wonder when Dan gave up on the introduction.
  • "Hi I'm Dan Fernandez, and you are...Blaise Aggooooaratta"

    Whoa Smiley
  • Not a fan of the not-so-surround-sound?
  • hakhak
    "I love Photosynth, but... what is this, MobileMe?"

    No, simply a Microsoft product....

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