panorama software,virtual tour software
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2005-08-01
#1

Why do you take pano's/ digital imaging?

I have always had in interest in photography. When digital came along many years ago... it tied directly in with my passion for computers.

Then in 1997 my eye sight took a turn for the worse. Total sight loss would have had a great impact on my photography interests. During that year I had cataracts removed from both my eyes... and instant visual gratification followed.

Then the Internet came along and I found an outlet for showing people around the world what we now see with our panorama photography.


While panorama photography only earns 3% of our total annual revenue, I find 97% of pleasure in creating them.

So now what I see... you may also see on http://360texas.com
 
And now you know.....

/s/
Dave AT 360Texas.com

/s/
Dave
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2005-08-03
#2
Excellent question! Many years ago I saw a few photos taped together in a collage to show a sunset on the horizon.It was awful but the concept intrigued me. Later I saw Hockney's photo (polaroid?) montages and was hooked on the idea of multiple images forming a collective whole.

When I got my first 35mm SLR (an Halina Paulette Electric) I tried to do the same. That was in 1976.

Over the years I sometimes stuck together printed photos with varying degrees of success eventually giving up on the idea as being too hit and miss, not to mention, wasteful.

Then two things happened: on holiday in New Zealand in 2002, a friend grabbed my 35mm conpact and shot off three frames of my wife and me with two of his kids against the Auckland skyline. When we got back to the UK, I stitched the images in PhotoShop and was well impressed. At about the same time I happened to buy a new webcam from Creative which came with a crude panorama program, PixMaker. And the pano bug came back with a vengeance.

Via a few borrowed digital cameras (mainly Canon's 'cos they come with some great software for cylindrcal pano's) and then a Fuji 602z + Pixtra's bug ridden pano software, I came to my current set up: Canon 20D, Canon 15mm fisheye, 360Precision head, Realviz Stitcher and Tourweaver.

Photo panoramas are actually a spin off from my 3D imaging and web work. Still working towards the perfect pano.....

Mark
Cheers,
Mark
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2005-08-03
#3

"Dave, how long did it take you to get your business off the ground and how did you start it out? Do you have any tips for a newbie like me? I don't mind if I never make any money at this, but I sure think the satisfaction of supporting yourself doing what you love must be tremendous"

About a year before I retired after 37 years with Government Service, I decided I better figure out what I was going to do after retiring.  Retiring does not mean you stop work.. you just replace the normal 8 to 5 work routine with an 8 to 5 enjoyable environment of your own choosing.  As mentioned earlier,  Panorama imaging revenue only represents 3% of our total revenue. 

To answer your question..In 1998, we chose digital imaging as a part time corp product for our 360Texas.com.  We have 2 or 3 panorama contracts each year.  Which is good for me, because I can do other tasks in between projects.  For example, I am online 8 - 5 each day Monday through Friday where I work with VR folks in several forums (like this one) facilitating camera/ software issues. 

I also use 3 Instant Messengers to talk/ Video conference real time with VR folks who drop in for an issue reslolution discussion.  I talk with Bruce in Japan, Markus in Switzerland, Rodrigo and Nigel in the UK and Mitch and Jack out in the South Pacific Islands on Guam.

I also beta-test stitching programs for a couple of software companies, 1 of which is Easypano Panoweaver software.

And like a few people,  my first panorama was taken at Pattaya Beach, Thailand in 1979. I think I exhausted my supply of cello tape stitching this image.

 


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Dave
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2005-08-03
#4
Lots of inspiration and creatitivity is born in this space. We offer no apology for the clutter.

Dave AT 360texas.com

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2005-08-02
#5
Hi Dave

Yes, panorama photography at its best.

I have two questions

1. How do you autorotate your QT Movies? I try PanoCube, but for some reasons the script.txt doesent work at all. Do you use another Windows tool?

2. How do you converted the panoramas into flash videos? (program name)

Thank you

Markus
http://www.powertext.ch Canon 20D / Sigma 8mm / Roundshot VR-Drive
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2005-08-02
#6

QTVR Autorotate is a sprite track add in using Panocube +Plus.  The free panocube does not use sprites.  

At the moment there is an Austrian developer creating a program that is still in beta development.  His plans are to include sprites. 

Our Mexico Client developed the Flash template using Macromedia Flash MX.  It is propriatory code.

Dave


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2005-08-02
#7
Dave,

You are my new hero! I'm really new to this panorama imaging gig, but I've been digitally manipulating images for almost 15 years now. It wasn't until last year that I decided to give taking pictures myself a try. So I bought a digital SLR and I've not stopped snapping since (http://emarts.gfxartist.com). About 2 or 3 months ago I had an opportunity to join a company that creates virtual tours for the residential real estate market. It didn't work out for me, but the bug to create panoramic photography stayed with me.

I'm still early in my journey and the learning curve has been a bit steep, but I am enjoying every minute of it. I went out to a botanical garden this past weekend and it was like therapy for me. Just me and my tripod and camera, out shooting the environment. My mind was rejuvinated.

Dave, how long did it take you to get your business off the ground and how did you start it out? Do you have any tips for a newbie like me? I don't mind if I never make any money at this, but I sure think the satisfaction of supporting yourself doing what you love must be tremendous.
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2005-08-04
#8
Dave,

You helped me over at panovista with a conversion to 3.5 after the update. I was missing the deselection of the fisheye check box.

These things (VT's) are an addiction for sure. I am a full time realtor and these are about 3% of my income as well. I post with VRGuild.   ex http://www.sembrot.com/191goodhill

You know what they say if your not growin' your dyin'. I would like to get a bit more immersive and jump to the sigma 8mm, but I noticed your set up above.

"" I came to my current set up: Canon 20D, Canon 15mm fisheye, 360Precision head, Realviz Stitcher and Tourweaver.""

My current set up is Canon 300D, Canon 15mm fisheye, Kaidan Kiwi-L, Panovista, and Tourweaver.

I would love the 20D it really is a worthwhile upgrade. I am already down the path with Kaidan and will probably keep on with them, though some other hardware providers are significantly less expensive, Panovista is fast for me, I do a little pre processing by reducing the pic size and adding a little compression(ie. lower quality to 65 or 70), and Tourweaver.

I am thinking of using my 300D with a Sigma 8 mm and Panoweaver. Why? well fewer shots mainly, the exposure correction for all 12 photos is problematic many times. So less time shooting and processing. Better product, the Circlepix guys in my neighborhood have caught up with me and do it for half price. I think I need a little more immersion to stay ahead. Smaller file size? Do you know if the file sizes are smaller with the 4 shot drum stitch?


John R Sembrot
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2005-08-04
#9

Hi John,

Hmmmm let me think.  The Sigma 8 can be used on the Rebel XT (8mp 350d) so there is no reason why it won't work on the 300d. 

We shoot 4 images with the sigma 8 and 20d or 350d.  And we shoot Raw imaging.  This allows us to convert the Raw imaging to 8bit for stitching with PW4.

As always, level up on each of the 4 shots...

It is interesting how I get followed around in the forum scene.  But I am glad... knowledge sharing is important.

Talk with me off forum please at dave AT360texas.com

Dave


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2005-08-09
#10
Quote: Originally posted by 360texas on August-03-2005
Lots of inspiration and creatitivity is born in this space. We offer no apology for the clutter.

Dave AT 360texas.com

Nice to see someone elses creative space  View mine here  Pano is not the quality of most that are posted here, but just starting and learning.

Matt


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2005-08-09
#11

Yup,  I can see the creativity flowing.  Far too tidy.

I basically work on the pilot business technique.  I start something and get interupted by a phone call.  Then I start something different and then I have an opportunity to help resolve an issue on MS IM chat.  Essentially that generates 2 piles of paper/work.  More projects started and interupted the more piles you will find on my desk.

Once a week I bring in a shovel, and move all the little piles into 1 large pile and spend an hour sorting out the stuff into 3 major work piles those I want to do now,  need to do tomorrow and a 3rd pile that can wait until next week.  Its all about time management you know.

OH.. and yes I eventually do complete projects.  Those go into a neatly stacked pile sorted by completion date.

Are we having fun yet ??

Dave


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