More panoramas coming soon

The second I woke up this morning I had a blinding flash of inspiration. I created a makeshift monopod for my Sony Clie PEG-NX70V using a Swiss army knife, a long piece of dental floss and the clip from a broken Mickey Mouse keitai strap. (I really wanted to use duct tape to make it an official McGiver hack but couldn’t figure out how to fit it into the equation.)

Here’s the entire process. The clip attaches to the Clie right under the camera, the floss is tied to the clip and the Swiss army knife acts as a plumb bob so the Clie’s video camera stays relatively the same height and location. I shoot a video of everywhere from top to bottom, 360 degrees around, while trying to keep the camera’s lens rotating around the same point in space. The MPEG gets imported into the PC where I delete the crappy parts with QuickTime. Then I export one or two frames per second as JPEGs — about 150-400 images in all. Those get fed into AutoStitch, which theoretically should piece them all together into one image. When the image is viewed with the PTviewer Java applet, it should look fairly good, although relatively low res since the Clie’s video camera only does 160 X 120. Maybe I should try taking stills at 640 X 480.

There are lots of autostitched photos in flickr under the tags autostitch and composite. And beautiful QuickTime panoramas from around the world (along with the moon and Mars) at panoramas.dk.

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Rich Pav

Richard has been living in Japan since 1990 with his wife and two teenage sons, Tony and Andy.

4 thoughts to “More panoramas coming soon”

  1. Hey, I like your podcast. You do good work. I was wondering if you could keep your current style, but make them longer and to include more sounds from the city around it. It is much more engrossing when you can hear the city as you speak. Thanks.

  2. I’ve been listening to your work, and I enjoy it, but it doesn’t take me back like I thought it would.
    One suggestion for now: take someone with you on your recording trips. A dialog can be so much more interesting when there’s no video to go along with it. More interesting than a guy sitting in a McDonalds talking about microphones. Besides, a couple (perhaps with your Mrs.) gabbing away on the street is a lot less suspicious than a henna gaijin talking to himself.
    Thanks for listening.

  3. Hello from Jackson, Mississippi – USA.
    I really enjoy your podcast!
    I grew up in Dothan, Alabama & for 30 years my dad worked for SONY.
    He went to Japan once & we had japanese friends in our family circle when I was growing up…..
    So I’ve always had this connection to Japan & have ALWAYS & still really want to go….
    but wouldn’t know where to start….
    I’ve got to figure that out.

    Anyway, – just wanted to drop you a line & say HEY! – I dig your podcast.

    The only thing I would say is that you should use LESS compression on your recordings… –
    Those wonderful binaural recording are muddied by the mpeg compression process….
    Maybe you could have a low band file & a high band file?

    Just a thought…..

    THANKS!

    Philip Scarborough

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