updated 12:45 am EDT, Thu August 21, 2008
Microsoft on Wednesday unveiled a new technology for viewing and relating photographs called Photosynth, offering users a three-dimensional, 360-degree view of almost any environment. Microsoft claims the software provides users with the ability to share "the places and things [they] love using the cinematic quality of a movie, the control of a video game, and the mind-blowing detail of the real world."
Photosynth can assemble three-dimensional scene compositions of rooms or landscapes by detecting similarities in photographs, adding perspective based on the camera's vantage point.
While Microsoft is excited about the technology, it says that Photosynth is available as a preview release of sorts, adding that there are many features and platforms it has yet to support.
Among the unsupported platforms are both Apple's Mac OS X and Safari web browser. Windows XP (SP2 or SP3) or Windows Vista are required, running Internet Explorer 7, Firefox 2, or Firefox 3.
"Unfortunately, we're not cool enough to run on your OS yet," reads a note on the installation page. "We really wish we had a version of Photosynth that worked cross platform, but for now it only runs on Windows."
"Trust us, as soon as we have a Mac version ready, it will be up and available on our site."