Monday, March 30, 2015

Creating Seamless Street View Transitions

Perspective Scaling is a demonstration of how to create seamless transitions between adjacent 360 degree panoramas.

You have probably noticed the jumps that occur when you walk along a street in Street View on Google Maps. Google tries to lessen this jump-cut by fading out the current panorama and fading in the next panorama. However there is still a noticeable jump as you move from one Street View to another.

Perspective Scaling uses the depth maps of the panoramas to apply a more seamless transformation as you move from one panorama to the next. The result in the demonstration is very impressive.

I have no idea if the Perspective Scaling process could actually be applied to Google Maps Street View. I do know that you can retrieve the depth map from Google Maps Street View using the GSVPanoDepth Street View depth library. You can see the GSVPanoDepth library in action in Callum Prentice's Street Cloud and Street Cloud Flow.

The closest I've seen of a seamless journey along a street is 360 Langstrasse. 360 Langstrasse is a truly impressive website which allows you to move up and down Langstrasse by simply scrolling up & down the page. However 360 Langstrasse doesn't use panoramas. The effect in this case is actually achieved by using a video. As you scroll up and down the page you are in fact just moving between the different video stills.

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