In 2007 Blaise Agüera y Arcas and his team started on a not-so-small mission: “To reinvent the whole enterprise of photography for ordinary people.” and when I first saw his TED presentation my jaw honestly dropped to the floor. However when I later on tried PhotoSynth out myself I found it lacking in many respects.
Now the team has released PhotoSynth 3D and I have signed up and are currently on the waiting list and boy am I excited.
The technology seems to be similar to Autodesks 123D Catch with the important difference that Photosynth is image centric whereas 123D Catch is focusing on building 3D models.
A very interesting aspect of the proces was how the team handled something that initially seemed to be a problem and turned it into an opportunity (make lemonade from lemons…)
“Where we sort of failed, I think, was that the panoramas never stitch,” Agüera y Arcas says. “When you hold the mobile phone to make the panorama, you never do a good enough job for the result to be useful for 3-D reconstruction … You can’t hold the camera still enough — you always end up with seams and things.”
Rather than hammering away at this frustrating problem, Agüera y Arcas turned the problem on its head. “We realized that we could really make hay out of the idea of camera movement during the capture of a panorama instead of fighting it,” says Agüera y Arcas. “So instead of insisting that you hold the camera totally fixed, we can say, ‘Look, there are a bunch of different ways of moving the camera.’”
via TED blog