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For Release 5 a.m.
Aug. 21, 2008
Microsoft Live Labs Introduces Photosynth, a Breakthrough Visual Medium
Share more than photos; share an experience.
READING, UK — Aug. 21, 2008 — First there was the snapshot, and then came video. Now there is Microsoft Photosynth, a new service from Microsoft Live Labs that goes far beyond how you now view, experience and share photos.
You can share or relive a holiday destination or explore a distant museum or landmark; with a digital camera and your own creativity and inspiration, you can use Photosynth to transform regular digital photos into a three-dimensional, 360-degree experience. Anybody who sees your “synth” is put right in your shoes, sharing in the same sense of exhilaration and wonder that you did at the time, with detail, clarity and scope impossible to achieve in conventional photos or videos.
“Photosynth has presented me with a new way to showcase my images as real life experiences, rather than flat pictures,” said James Glossop, The Times Young Photographer of the Year 2008. “This opens up exciting possibilities for photographers. Our audiences can now interact with the landscapes and events that we document,” he continued.
An Entirely New Medium Synths constitute an entirely new visual medium. Photosynth analyses each photo for similarities to the others, and uses that data to estimate where a photo was taken. It then re-creates the environment and uses that as a canvas on which to display the photos. The potential uses of Photosynth can range from sharing experiences to storytelling and documentation:
The London Eye is one of the many launch partners who are utilising Photosynth technology to enrich their website. “Photosynth will allow our visitors to explore the London Eye in a new, interactive manner. They are now able to experience views of and around the London Eye allowing them to get a better understanding of what they can expect from their visit and where the London Eye is positioned amongst other landmarks,” said Helen Bull, Marketing Director, The London Eye.
Using Photosynth Getting started with Photosynth is easy:
Following this release, the Photosynth team will join MSN — an important step in continuing to improve Photosynth and share the experience with an even wider audience. In addition to letting users create and share synths at http://livelabs.com/photosynth/, over the next year Photosynth will begin to become a key part of the experience for MSN’s 550 million monthly visitors worldwide. Synths will be prominently featured on MSN.com. To create a more absorbing experience for its visitors, MSN will use synths of popular destinations and notable events in many of the places where static images are used on the site today.
About Microsoft Live Labs Microsoft Live Labs is an applied research organisation focused on the incubation of innovative, Internet-centric technologies to improve and accelerate the next evolution of Microsoft’s Internet products and services. Through rapid prototyping of emerging technologies and incubation of entirely new inventions, Live Labs aims to advance the state of the art of Internet technologies and enable new scenarios for its users. Live Labs believes that collaboration with other groups at Microsoft, government and academic research labs, and industry labs and pioneers, is key to fulfilling its mission, and works to build strong relationships with these groups.
About Microsoft Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq “MSFT”) is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realise their full potential.