Photosynth launched last week to a lot of fanfare and it’s definitely one of the coolest things I've seen come out of Microsoft. It's also one of the more interesting RIA examples out there. It provides a really great user interface and a level of richness for photos that the web hasn't ever seen. A week after launch there is a decent collection of "synths" out there which show off the technology pretty well. I found 5 that are unique, interesting, and will absolutely take you away from whatever you're doing and put you in another world. I can't wait to see more people use this (and to see it available on a Mac). So put on some music and get ready to jump around the planet.
Boats by Chihuly Chihuly has always been famous for his glasswork. In this Photosynth you get to see it like never before. You can zoom around the boat, and drill into detail. It’s a perfect example of how art and technology can blend to provide a really great user experience.
Not only is the scenery good, but making a person the focal point of a synth makes for a very interesting visualization. As you click through different views you can watch the climber move along the rock. As the background changes you almost get the sense that you’re the one doing all the hard work.
Halo 3 Zanzibar
Played Halo 3? Then this level will be familiar. Using screenshots of the game we’re able to jump into the middle of the Halo world like it was any other place on Earth. It’s got a bunch of photos and it’s really cool to zoom out and watch the 3D shapes form.
National Geographic did a bunch of Photosynths and I thought Stonehenge was one of the best. They took more than 400 photos of the ancient monument which gives the user complete control over what and how they want to see it. It’s one of the more complete synths on the site and you can spend hours crawling over the rocks and stones.
Scoble Family Room
Yup, Scoble synthed his family room. But in doing show he proved that Photosynth is also great for small spaces and family memories. With only 50 photos, Robert was basically able to recreate his room which makes for a great way to share with friends and family (and the entire Internet). But the small space means it’s easy to move around and is a great demo for showing how well Photosynth can stitch together basically anything.