Controlling the speed of the slideshow

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Here's an idea that I think many of us have had.

VenenoCY replied
on August 30, 2008 12:53

Hi, i was wondering if it's possible to control the speed of the slideshow.

It appears that on slower internet connections the transition between photos happens before the images are even show correctly and on their full quality. You can have a slidebar underneath to adjust the speed between transitions or at least not to move on the next photo until is fully downloaded.

Thank you

Michael
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Nathanael Lawrence

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Posted 7 years ago

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David Gedye, Principal Group Manager

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In Photosynth we tried very hard to go with an uncluttered interface without all the control panel options that many applications have (especially those from Microsoft :-)

Maybe we made the wrong decision on this one, but remember that the space bar is your manual way to step through the same sequence as the slide show, so you can completely control the thing if you're willing to tap the space bar.

Here's another idea that I'd like to float by the community: What if we made the speed of the slideshow related to how long it took the images to "fully resolve"? For example, we could decide to advance the slide show 2 seconds after the current image had fully resolved. On faster networks you'd get a new image every 4 seconds or so, and on slower ones every 10 seconds or so. Useful, or annoying?
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Nathanael Lawrence

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As far as an uncluttered interface goes, I have nothing but admiration for your dedication to elegance and simplicity. I also think that your suggestion of waiting until the current resolution of the photo fully resolves to move on is right on the money. I don't know how to stress that enough. There are already two, if not more, accounts of people being embarrassed when showing off Photosynth to their friends because the photos were not fully loading, giving a poor impression. I think, looking at one of the stories, that it likely occurred during your server overload days, so it is understandable, but I think that it is solid policy, nonetheless.

I suppose that in an incredibly optimistic theoretical case, there would need to be some minimum amount of time that a picture would stay on screen... i.e. you have the data cached locally and you don't care to whip through the slideshow at a rate of 10 photos per second. :) I have no idea if SeaDragon is that performant, but you get the idea.

Also, I've been wondering what sort of caching SeaDragon does. I often find when I am progressing through photos that if I wait for a photo to fully resolve, move forward, and then go back without changing the zoom level that it appears to load everything back in again from the lowest resolution up. Is this truly the intended mode of operation?

One idea that occurred to me while typing is something of a volume knob that could ring around the Play button... I like the idea, but it may prove too obtuse to implement.
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Yeah, and on a fast connections every 0,1s a new photo shows up. Not a good decision, just make a maximum limit of 2s or so.
Nice idea, but not necessary. Just make a local version of photosynth. I've an apache server next to me, why can't I use it? Why doesn't the photosynth team allow me to show my synths to my friends? Why do I have to upload anything? :-(
Don't get me wrong, It's a nice idea, but there are some major things that got to be fixed right now!
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Gabriel Walsh

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David, my two cents on this one are: cent 1) "fully resolve" is definitely better than don't resolve at all and move on too quickly, but it may still leave a little to be desired.
cent 2) As much as your uncluttered interface / settings concept is great, it is still important to allow the creator of the content to dictate the user experience. Here's what I mean: flash has few if any settings the end user can realistically "adjust", but the creator of an swf can add in an infinite amount of control: automatic slideshow speeds, speed controls, hotspts to allow advance, etc, etc. So, what I think is critical, ESPECIALLY in the embed mode of Photosynth, is that the creator is allowed to dictate things like (among others) the play speed of the slideshow. This will immediately make the tool a fair amount more powerful to different types of content creators and therefore likely increase adoption significantly.
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David Gedye, Principal Group Manager

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Gabriel -- good point on the difference between user control and author control. Author control, in fact, is likely to be one of our major pushes as soon as we finish working on the upload problems that are really hurting a number of users. I'm still not sure that I'd allow authors to set the slideshow speed for all viewers though...