What features should we add to Photosynth?

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  • translation missing: en.shared.topic.styles.singular.talk
  • Updated 7 years ago
We've got our backlog list of things that we know will make Photosynth better, but I'm sure we're only seeing some of the opportunities here. What would make Photosynth drmatically more useful and fun for YOU?
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David Gedye, Principal Group Manager

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Posted 12 years ago

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warpig

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A manual synth feature, if you go and view a synth and a picture was not included in a scene you should be able to manual place it and line it up.
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tweeto

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or at least helping the synth by pointing about connections that it might skipped.
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stuartmarsden

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You need to do the right thing and open source it. The community would then do the porting to other platforms like linux, mac, bsd, etc. You also need to give a guarantee that you will not pull any patent nonsense.

Great technology shame that microsoft are in charge of it. Imagine how much more progress this would have made if it was open from the start.

I can dream.
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sprior

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The ability to specify that a given subset of pics are to be used for the 3d stitching, but will not end up as part of the finished gallery. This helps with making the scene more "synthy", but not overload the end viewer with too many overlapping shots or maybe lower quality pics. Also the ability to trim out 3d groups or disconnected pics - I walked around my house, shot lots of pics and synthed them all, then found that while there were some nice spots, there were a few unimpressive groups and a bunch of disconnected pics. Those should have been easy to delete since they didn't contribute much anyway.
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Sierra_Rambler

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I'd like to echo this same reaction completely. There seems to be a synthing sweet spot somewhere around 150 images, with more just contributing to overall clutter and distracting the viewer/user from the best ones.

On the other hand, there's a dichotomy here (this might be worth its own thread, I don't know) -- the more images in a given synth, the better job the 3D modeler does. I get the urge to give the modeler tons of images in order to have a really impressive point-mesh (when viewed with the Ctrl key held) at viewing time, yet this directly conflicts with the previous concern. So "sprior" has a good suggestion, allowing some images to be toggled out of visibility while still having those images participate in the modeling. That seems like a wise choice.
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Blaise Aguera y Arcas, Employee

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I think this is a great idea. It's something we've talked about doing and are considering.
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tweeto

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* prefetching and offline capabilities.
* let me know of other peoples synths that sync with mine and can fill my holes.
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r-gordon-7

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Since it's largely web-based anyhow, the abilty to view photosyths directly through the web browser without the need to install any special software on the viewing computer... Most workplace computers require "an administrator" (or someone with "administrator privileges") to be able to install anything - meaning photosynths can't be viewed on most computers in a workplace environment... OTOH, if the program were entirely (rather than just mostly) web-based...
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tweeto

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one more...
* The ability to change the cover image of a synth.
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Nashev

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+1
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Warren

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Me too!
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Skinkie

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I was looking in the past for this kind of features in Blender3D. But linking photo's together by manual placements. A human picks the points that matches of different photos and the photos get aligned by it.

Now If there is perfect alignment it must be possible to generate a 3D space from it better than doing the complete process automatically.
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diffdude

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I can't seem to use latitude/longitude in Virtual Earth to geotag the synth. I can search for places, but not use lat/lon values directly.
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panterdnola

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I like that you can Geotag, and I think a clear next step is to be able to search through maps and view synths from there. Also, I really like being able to click on a tag and view other synths with the same tag, and that you have a commenting system. I think you could add more social-networking type features, like a notification when a friend adds a new synth. It would also be cool if you could link to a specific photo in a synth - basically, have that be the one initially in focus when opening the synth,
A fly-around feature would be cool. Controlling the speed of the slide show would sort of provide that.
Oh, and something small that I think would be pretty cool would be to have the interaction with the donut be slightly more fluid. for example, I like that if you're just viewing the pointcloud, you can twist the donut to the 'back side' where there are not pictures, but then when you let go, it springs you back. I think it would be cool if there was a mode where the donut kept spinning after you left go, depending on how fast you spun it (vs how currently it just snaps to whatever photo you are on when you release it).
And lastly, thanks for the awesome site!
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diffdude

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Can you add the % done to the window title so when Photosynth is minimized, I can monitor the progress on the taskbar.
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techmatt

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Export calibration matrices for each image in the scene. Or at least release a large # of existing synths as datasets for multi-view reconstruction research.
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Matt Shannon

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Hypothesized Images?
using the existing point cloud as references between images, you could very quickly plug this into any of the image morphing software out there to obtain reasonable hypothesized viewpoints, so that you could pan and rotate as you like for and get a reasonably accurate object.
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Cliff Williams

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I Just learned about Photosynth this morning and am about thirty minutes into doing my own photosynth. The possible implications of this program "and the offspring of the program" are incredible. A couple additions to this program I would like to see are . 1.Manual control of the stitching process. 2.Allow Scenes to be connected.
Think about what this program could do for video games. Have a friend take a picture of you from many angles. Then upload that image to a video game that would have the a version of the photosynth technology that would allow the pictures to be applied to a standard blank 3d rendering of a human body. You could play as yourself in video games!!!

AnyBody else heard of this Intel Wireless Power source that can power notebook computers and light bulbs? Intel just released information on it. Think about this. Electric Cars that always have a wireless power source about as consistent as a Cell phone is at getting a connection. Then they would have a smaller battery (you wouldn't need a large one if you were almost always connected to a wireless power source)
and the only time they would use their battery is if the cars lost their signal.

Then we could have a meter box on the car that was digital that told us where and when we received power from a wireless power station then we could be charged for that usage accordingly using the wireless networks that will soon cover More of the United States.

Just a though
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ad2476

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How about letting people share their own synths on their own websites or in their own documents?
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Blaise Aguera y Arcas, Employee

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You can do this! There's an embed feature (the <> icon under the synth caption) that gives you the JavaScript to embed.
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Vagabum

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Of course this still only makes it viewable in Windows IE.

The Embed should allow cross browser and cross platform support.
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Mike Warot

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1> Add more images to an existing synth (or copy thereof) to allow building up of a more complex synth over time.
2> Provisions to allow the user to give hints as to how images overlap, to help eliminate bundles that really should all be connected
3> Provisions to blend the seams of photos that are in the same plane (or very close to it) to allow better panoramas
4> Offline tools to build things when I'm commuting to/from work and don't have internet connectivity
5> A complete set of manual tools to allow for things like a good synth of Cloud Gate in Chicago, or the Library that synth currently seems to hate.
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Manny

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I would first start by fixing the broken links on the home page.
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palmerisemo

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Lots of ideas here, and I'm not going to read them all so this may be a repeat.

-Building on one of the early ideas: for dating photos, a '4D' view could be incredible and totally useful. Say, in case a location has evolved over time. For example, you have a synth of your house, you build on a patio, take some pictures and add it to the existing synth. The 4D could then transition from before to after. Could also be an interesting project to shoot weekly in a nature area for a year and watch the scene evolve!
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Quasi

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I miss the viewing pyramids from the earlier Beta, where you could see the point of origin of every photo, and their field of view. Quickly switching to a bird's-eye-view was also really cool.

Integrating it with Geotagging and Flickr would also be an obvious step.

Manually editing the groups which don't Synth with the main group would also help, when you know you should be at 100%.

The camera rotate keys don't seem logical, but maybe that's because I'm using a British keyboard. A shortcut hint-list wouldn't go amiss either, just to get you learnin'.

As has been said, navigating between or into rooms is extremely hard, this should be fixed too.

Otherwise, this is a top-class program. I've been waiting a long time to get my hands on it, thanks guys.
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r-gordon-7

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"Manually editing the groups which don't Synth with the main group would also help, when you know you should be at 100%." Sorry to keep repeating this but this is the most needed of features!
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haydenhibbard

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At the moment, here's what I'm wanting:

*Top Priority* = More server bandwidth. This comes before all other features except perhaps the ability to save or preview synths locally (since that would provide the servers and the users some relief)

-Don't even upload collections that are 0% synthy (or even less than 10% synthy. save everyone's time and some bandwidth).

-Advanced search and more optional data fields to enter when creating a synth (I would love it if you could enter optional data while the synth is being created). Fields like location, dates, approx times, links to relevant wikis, etc.

-Add images to existing synths (even if only your own synths) after they're uploaded

-Allow photo rotating inside "create synth" window, since photosynth can't handle rotated photos well.

-Merge synths

-Improved/More intuative controls

-Allow us to 'mark' problematic elements of photos to help the program know what to ignore. i.e. mirrors, the sun having moved across the sky, people or pets moving about into multiple pictures, etc.

-Optional templates to help the program know what it's looking at. i.e. Room Interior, Outdoor landscape, Single Object. These could get very specific.

-Allow viewing of synths with plug-in only, no client side install required.

-More community features.

-Make it easier (one click and a dropdown menu or reasons) to report inappropriate collections. As it is you have to copy a link and go to another page.

That's it for now. I'm sure more will come to me.
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Blaise Aguera y Arcas, Employee

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Great feedback Hayden, thanks!
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Nashev

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+1
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Sanshyuum

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First of all, I would like to know how synthy my upload will be, before i upload.

I would like to be able to view the synth before uploading.

Something I noticed was that there are a bunch of little dots in the 3d space, and on the photos that are 100% synthy, they actually make a good representation of the thing being depicted just with dots... if you could connect them, you could make them a 3D surface than just use the picture as a texture.

I would like an option to tweek how many pictures are visible at a time and how many are in focused.

I would like a public synth feature. Where you would set up a synth for say the empire state building, and then anyone who had pictures could upload them to the synth, creating a group user generated synth. (this of course would require us to be able to add new photos to a preexisting synth. Or som1 could just keep all the pictures together and add to them when they get new ones, then resynth and upload.
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Brad

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Add the ability to add stationary video, seems like a logical addition.
As most of the scene would be stationary, you would just be able to view smaller obects moving within each scene (such as people walking, a bird flying, or cars driving by).
It would make for a much more interesting synth.
With Stationary video, 90% of the image would be roughly the same in every frame.
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Blaise Aguera y Arcas, Employee

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This is stealthtech's posting on a different thread-- reposting here to make sure we don't miss it. He's talking about image ordering (does order matter).

I was wondering that myself. If it has some importance should that be clearified with the community? I was figuring that the GUI did not do it there for it was not important. Could I suggest that may adding the abiltiy to re-arange by dragging and droping images. Or some GUI icons to represent chaning of the order. Again if it is not a big issue then no problem. But if it is an issue to have a zoomed in image first instead of a panned out shoot then it would be nice to re-order the images. Then in the composer would be nice to do it before uploading.
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stealthtech

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Here is a follow up on the sorting idea.
What I'm going to try is to come up with a naming convention that will sort the way I intend it to be. The issue is that after stepping in for a close up if I need to step back then then those images are our of sequence. I'm using the focal lenght or the subject length as part of the file name. I use three zones, far back, medium, and close up, and maybe a fourth (very close up).

filename_slg_a_00001
filename_slg_a_00002
filename_slg_a_00003
filename_slg_b_00001
filename_slg_b_00002
filename_slg_b_00003
filename_slg_c_00003
filename_slg_c_00003
filename_slg_c_00003

Subject Lenght Group A thru C

A room synth would be a bit different. The image in the center would be group A. Then the corners and side wall will be group B. Then Group C and D would be zoom in of subjects in the room. Base on the PDF guide.

I'm hoping that renaming the files into groups will help. If I took an image in group c then figured I needed to take an image that belongs in group b. Based on existing sorting b would come after c. It should have been before. Renaming the files would then make sure that the images are sorted correctly. instead of being after 005 in the sequence it would before.

One other issue I found is that not all cameras work well with the file name. My cell phone camera made the images out of order. I think I got a call in the middle of synthing (damn them interupting my synthing).

Maybe the GUI should have a way to group the images in a subject length.

I go back to the DeepZoom composer. You could have the images imported. Then build a canvas or various subject lenght groups then put the images in those groups by dragging and droping from the import image list.
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RyGuy12

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One feature this needs is direct integration with windows live photo gallery. eg select a whole bunch of pictures, right click, and click synth just like you can make a panarama. also allowing right click and make a PhotoZoom album would be awesome, like photo gallery and DeepZoom composer combined.
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stealthtech

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Ok, I was going to run some tests and see the difference in the 2D picture view. See what the order of the pictures are and if it changed from before. The challange is renaming 60+ image, so I wrote an application. That took some time.
Now that I'm ready to test. It looks like the site is being worked on and/or it is midnight (pst) and it is time to stop.
I will try tomorrow.