Photosynth has just been updated to include a major new feature called “Overhead View.” What this feature offers is the ability to look down on the image you’re viewing as if you were floating over the top of the scene. To enable this feature, Photosynth calculates a “cloud” of 3D points that represent the features matched between the photos, the team explains in their blog post about the update.
Not only does Overhead View provide you with a different perspective on what you’re viewing, you can also navigate to other parts of the synth via this view, too. Simply hover your mouse over the part of the scene you want to visit and you’ll be shown a thumbnail from that region. Click the thumbnail and you’ll immediately transition to that part of the synth.
The other updates in this new release of Photosynth have mostly taken place behind the scenes. They include a new Silverlight 3-based viewer, easier geotagging, better multiword search (in the team’s own words, it “no longer sucks”), and when you click the “view” button on the synther you’re automatically logged into the site and taken directly to the editor.
You can see the new Overhead View in action in this video here on Vimeo.