Posting in Cities
After digitizing tourist hotspots, the creator of Microsoft's PhotoSynth isn't resting on his laurels -- his next target is the entire planet.
The problem with Google Street View and Maps is that with rare exceptions, its data is entirely two dimensional. Satellites look down, after all, while Street View has captured only a very rough first draft of the world's streets.
That's where the work of Noah Snavely, a computer scientist at Cornell, comes in. You may not know his name, but you've probably seen his work in the form of Microsoft Photosynth, which is based on his code.
Snavely has pulled a number of tricks since his initial PhD work in the mid-aughts, from 3D visualizations of the Statue of Liberty based solely on tourist's photos to a point cloud realization of the Colosseum in Rome. (You can read about his work in detail in an accessible paper (pdf) on the subject published in 2010.)
One of the problems Snavely faces in getting sufficient coverage of cities is that reconstructing a three dimensional model of a street requires many more pictures than are captured by, for example, the cameras of Google Street View.
That's where the online game PhotoCity comes into play. The idea is to incentivize people to take pictures of particular spots on buildings, even their own neighborhood.
Another way to fully map cities in three dimensions is simply to get better data out of the photos that are already online. At this year's Emerging Technologies conference at MIT, Snavely said that if he had one wish, it would be that all cameras would accurately record the place where a user took a picture. Given that smart phones, which have build in location services, are now poised to capture more photos than conventional digital cameras, it might not be long until Snavely gets his wish.
Oct 26, 2011
Hmm nice, you should take a look at these Street / Infrastructure 3D models here is a link http://www.cgtrader.com/3D-models/Architectural-Exterior/Street/Infrastructure.html
This work is good i like it and so do others,actually we are also under the same business that is 3D Animation Services url:http://cattechnologies.com/3DDevelopment.aspx please do have a look.
(And, particularly - at PatrickEB) It's vitally impotent to your credibility, to poof-read your critiques before posting 'em!
there is no good reason not to write: "The idea is to ENCOURAGE people to take..." rather than "The idea is to incentive people to take..." which is such appalling grammar as to cause me to call the police and allege grievous bodily harm against the language. Where you thinking "...provide an incentive..." or "...to INCENTIVATE...."? I hope the former and not the latter. That all said, thanks for the article Christopher. Very interesting. :))