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A Photosynth 2 Overview with David Gedye

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David Gedye walks us through a first look at Photosynth 2.0. This new update gives you a far more stitched and '3D model' look than past Photosynths through four different types of guided paths. The compute to create these synths is considerable, especially for large collections, so Photosynth 2 now uses Azure to do the heavy lifting. Photosynth 2 collections also are more touch friendly so you can touch to navigate more easily than in the past on touch devices.  

You can view a selection of these new synths and start making your own at Photosynth.net/Preview. I had a chance to play with Photosynth 2 over the weekend. I've made a hobby of collecting photos from Apollo missions to the moon and I wanted to try loading these 45 year old images into Photosynth just to see what it would do. You can view all my Photosynth 2 collections here, below are a few of my favorites. 

Earth rising on the horizon of the moon. 

Collection of 14 images from surface of the moon. Press M on the keyboard to see the track the camera choose. 

Boulders on the surface of the moon. 

Descent.

Taking soil samples. 

What it looks like to kick over a big rock on the moon. 

Collecting samples. 

Coasting over craters.

One full orbit (#28) from Apollo 17. Click M on the keyboard to see the track of the camera, and then click C to view the images relative to each other. Use your mouse wheel to zoom out and see the arc of the orbit.

Family photo that Charlie Duke left on the moon. Zoom in with your mouse wheel or with fingers on a touch device. 

Here I downloaded a series of images of the Sun and selected wall in Photosynth 2.  

For more Photosynths of the moon, sun, and my kid's Lego sets, see my preview page

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    The Discussion

    • User profile image
      carlomendoza

      I'm hoping the Windows Phone app is allowed to do more than just simple panoramas.

    • User profile image
      natelawrence

      @carlomendoza:All that needs to happen is for the Photosynth team to update the mobile apps to allow us to upload multiple photos from our camera roll and also get WebGL on the phone.

      Right now, the preview is web-only, but I don't expect the apps to take long to update.

      The viewer is a bit more of a question mark. Internet Explorer 11 needs to get ported to Windows Phone 8 before the guys can use WebGL on the phone.

      Windows Phone 7 may likely be sadly out of luck, even though the Interactive Visual Media guys at MSR had another version of this running on it back in 2011.

    • User profile image
      freefly

      What is wrong with the sample videos ?
      I get an error "Error : Video could not be decoded"
      I am using windows 8.1 and IE11 with latest updates !!!

    • User profile image
      Duncanma

      @freefly: Try viewing them at http://photosynth.net/preview/users/LarryLa,  I don't know much about the Photosynth player, but for me it shows up as a HTML 5 video player

    • User profile image
      LarryLarsen

      @freefly: You need to be on a device that can use WebGL to view these properly. If you're on a device that doesn't support WebGL it degrades to show the Photosynth path as a MP4, but that's not the real experience.  

    • User profile image
      natelawrence

      @LarryLarsen: I've actually experienced the same thing on a number of sites using IE 11.

      I asked about it on Photosynth's forum and Henri Astre from the Photosynth team told me: 

      "Are you using IE11?

      There is a bug in IE11 which is preventing an iframe to run in IE11 mode (thus with WebGL) when the parent page is rendered in a lower mode (IE10 for ex).
      The iframe page is rendered with the rendering mode of the parent page.
      So this is why an iframe (embed) can be rendered with the mp4 fallback video but clicking on the logo to view the synth will use the webgl viewer (as the view page on photosynth.net is rendered using IE11 mode).

      --Henri"

    • User profile image
      LukePuplett

      Hoping that I don't have to download from SkyDrive (MS) and re-upload to MS, then the cloud processing makes real sense.

      Also would be cool to video a scene and let the algorithm just pull out the overlapping stills from the stream.

      Great stuff, does this mean a better Bing Streetside experience?

    • User profile image
      LukePuplett

      By the way, was the cloud processing decision led by the need to secure the IP from reverse engineering?

    • User profile image
      Geoffreyk

      These demos should be working now with IE11

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