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The Glory of Sweep Panorama

The sweep camara


David Pogue


In my Times column today, I reviewed radical new cameras from Nikon and Pentax — two new entries in the race to perfect the pocket S.L.R. They have interchangeable lenses but have bodies small enough for a pants pocket.

Both cameras have some pretty profound flaws. On the Nikon 1, a chief failing is its mode dial. It has only four positions, and two are dedicated to gimmicky photo modes you’ll never use.

Take, for example, Motion Snapshot. The idea is that when you snap the photo, you get both the photo and a one-second, slow-motion video of the same moment, set to tinny music. What the —?

The people at Nikon are probably thinking that we’re entering a post-photograph era. Maybe the popularity of YouTube gave them that idea. Maybe a frozen image really is a holdover from the past, and a one-second slo-mo video is what the world wants next.

I’m skeptical. But there’s nothing wrong with rethinking the snapshot, and I’d like to take a moment to pay homage to a far more successful, useful rethink: the auto-panorama.

I’m on record as being in love with Sony’s NEX series. These are extremely tiny interchangeable-lens cameras that, unlike the Nikon and Pentax, have huge, S.L.R.-sized sensors inside. (I’m going crazy waiting for November’s NEX-7, which adds the two things the NEX family was missing: a flash and an eyepiece viewfinder.)

Not only do they take gorgeous photos, every time, but they incorporate Sweep Panorama, a feature of many Sony cameras. To use this mode, you simply swing the camera around you in an arc, squeezing the shutter button the whole time. You hear the shutter snapping away like a machine gun as the camera captures slice after slice of the scene, all the way around you in a 220-degree arc. It’s surprisingly tolerant of your arm-swinging speed.

When it stops, you look at the back of the camera: there, INSTANTLY, is a perfectly knit, finished, seamless panorama. You didn’t have to do any stitching work yourself.

And when I say perfectly knit, I mean it. This technology works.

More than that — it’s essential. It transforms photography. Think about how much we all sweat about getting wide photos. We buy wide-angle lenses. We review cameras and report the maximum width of their lens angles. Well, guess what? With Sweep Panorama, all of that is moot. A photo is as wide as you could possibly want it to be.

A panorama provides a much better representation of being there than the tiny slice provided by a regular photo. You can actually scan the scene, looking around you. And when it’s printed, a pano makes a perfect piece of art on the wall. Especially over a couch.

I’ve spent the last four months working on a two-hour “Nova” science special that I will be the host of (it will appear in February on PBS). We’ve traveled the world — Yellowstone, Yosemite, Russia and labs all around the country — and I’ve been using Sweep Panorama constantly.

I’ve posted some samples from my travels at There, you’ll discover a few fascinating twists.

For example, you can hold the camera either normally or turned 90 degrees. Turning it gives you a much taller panorama that’s not as wide. I actually prefer this style, because the regular panos aren’t very tall (and, at 220 degrees, even wider than probably necessary).

In one shot, I appear twice. I asked our assistant producer to start the sweep of her arm, and while she kept shooting, I ran around behind her so that I could appear again at the end of the sweep, in the same photo. It worked.

In another shot, of San Francisco Harbor, you’ll see an example of Sweep Panorama’s weak spot: It doesn’t do well when there’s movement in the scene. I was on a cruise ship approaching the harbor at a good clip as I snapped away. In the photo, the Golden Gate Bridge winds up looking weirdly segmented. (Shooting moving people is also often problematic. Sometimes people get smushed.)

I don’t think Sweep Panorama gets nearly enough press. I don’t think the Sony engineers who perfected it get nearly enough press. Nikon’s motion snapshots may not be an essential new addition to the world of photography, but easy panoramas definitely are. Those are some Sweet Panoramas indeed.


What better way to present your company than through a virtual tour?

virtual tour for companies

Perhaps one of the most efficient and guaranteed to deliver the expected results is the one involving virtual tours. Whether you’re the owner of a large corporation, a five-star relaxation spa or a deluxe hotel, you should be aware that a simple virtual tour posted on your website can really attract and maintain the interest of people. These people are potential customers, customers that you want to obtain their loyalty and keep them away from the competition. Well, using panoramic virtual tours is one sure way to ensure that things stay just they way you want to.
There is a big difference between a virtual tour and some pictures thrown in for the mix. Property virtual tours offer an experience that is unique, regardless from the point of view you look at it. If you want to convince yourself of how popular virtual tour photography has become, all you have to do is perform a simple search on a major search engines and see the results. Even if you are under a tight budget, that doesn’t meant that you cannot have quality advertising for your company. Yes, you can consider a virtual tour as a form of advertising, as it presents your business and the strong points of your company. A good virtual tour provider will know how to select the best shots for your virtual tour, making sure that you are completely satisfied with the work provided.
As you have probably understood by now, virtual tours have become important concepts of Internet marketing. More and more companies decide to present their location and actual business over the Internet, appealing to professional virtual tours. A virtual tour that presents everything is indeed to be appreciated, allowing website visitors to ‘enter’ that location on the spot and enjoy their incursion. Panoramic virtual tours have interactive box information, offering details on the most important aspects. They can be customized, depending on the client’s requirements and personal preferences.
How can you actually request a virtual tour? First of all, you go online and search for a reliable virtual tour provider. Once you have found someone with experience, make sure you fill out a quote and proceed from there. Photographers will arrive to the location desired and take care of the whole virtual tour photography part. The virtual tour will then be organized and sent to you for approval. As for the information that you will have to include in the quote, please do not forget to mention your name, email address and even offer some details about the project you had in mind.
As the most important thing is to bring your brand into the spotlight, you should know that there are several skins from which you can choose for your virtual tour. This will only contribute towards making your virtual tour even more appealing for the general public, which is, after all, one of the things that interest business owners the most!


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Virtual Tours for your property

Virtual Tour

5 Reasons For Opting For Virtual Tours

An increasingly popular marketing tool, a virtual tour company is quickly gaining steam for a large number of reasons. The use of a virtual tour provider can really take your website to the next level, enhancing it to its fullest, and in certain industries, the use of these tools are what can give you that oh-so-important edge. Widely appreciated, and with the amazing ability to increase interest and exposure of your website, the use of virtual tools is appealing to the senses, an excellent marketing strategy, and truly cost effective. For these reasons, which we will delve into a little further, the use of panoramic virtual tours, 360 virtual tours, or even virtual tour photography, as an excellent solution to promoting your site.

In certain industries, particularly real estate and retail, the use of a virtual tour company to create a unique 360 virtual tour for your site can be a highly cost effective and time saving solution. Without having to take the potential buyer directly to the home in question, with the use of virtual tour services that can provide you with either panoramic virtual tours or 360 virtual tours give the client the ability to see the house before they commit to look at it. Allowing potential clients to view your listed homes in depth, virtual tours give clients the ability to truly get a feel for what the places look like and the atmosphere they evoke. You are able to get the most important aspects of the home or product across as these tours allow you to see the object or room from every possible angle. For a fictional real estate agent, these tours can save him or her time and money by not having to waste precious time showing clients houses they reject off hand.

Users love these features as they are sophisticated and cutting edge and have the ability to provide a much better picture of the product, service, or place being proffered than any other form of online presentation. Often set to music, and made to showcase every element, these 360 virtual tours and panoramic virtual tours are very innovative in their use of technology, and these features really appeal to users.

Inexpensively, the use of the services of a virtual tour company is an excellent marketing strategy that allow you to showcase the best of what you have to offer, in an indirect, not “salesy” kind of way. Meaning that, if, for example, you are the manager of a rental property in England, the use of virtual tours of London and your individual units, make great promotional materials. Without having to leave their homes, potential renters are able to see if these places are right for them. Giving them a real feel for what their new home is going to be like, virtual tours of the UK are very appealing to long-distance movers who don’t have the ability to really check the place out before calling it home.

Using virtual tour photography, 360 virtual tours, or panoramic virtual tours are very well loved elements on any website. The use of a virtual tour business for all your virtual tour services is a great way to get more exposure, faster, by using a technological element that users truly love, this is a great way to stretch those marketing dollars to their fullest.

source:  articlebase




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Why your home isn’t selling

SAN FRANCISCO - MAY 04:  A sale pending sign i...

Image by Getty Images via @daylife

Virtual tours for selling properties

And what to do about it.

So your house has been sitting on the market for longer than you would have liked. Now what? While selling a home in the current economic climate may not be as smooth sailing as in the past, if the correct factors are in play, it should also not be too difficult.

There are usually three key reasons why a home may not be selling, but these situations are relatively easy to adjust and fix. They are:

1. Price

This is one of the most common reasons why homes don’t sell. While there might be a buyer for every home, it’s the buyers, not the sellers, who ultimately determine the market value of a home. In the current market over pricing has led to many properties being on the market much longer than they should be, and the longer a property is on the market, the less likely it is that the seller will get their initial asking price. On average sellers can expect their homes to spend between 30 and 60 days on the market, if it is correctly priced.

2. Condition of the property

If your home doesn’t appeal to you, it certainly won’t appeal to anyone else. In a buyer’s market, there is a lot of competition. Added to this, buyer’s in this kind of market are fussy – they have so much choice that they really don’t have to settle.

This means that sellers should only put their home on the market once it is in as good a condition as they can possibly achieve, sellers should to take a look at the condition of other homes in their area that are currently for sale and evaluate how their condition compares to your home. Your property needs to outshine the competition, so consider a minor facelift such as a coat of paint and undertake any necessary repairs. Make sure the garden is neat; that all unnecessary clutter is tidied away both inside and out and that the home has kerb appeal.

3. Marketing plan

Pictures really do say more than 1000 words – a point sellers should remember when their home is on the market. Just like you want to put your best side forward when being photographed, so your house should be photographed showcasing its best characteristics. In addition, many online listing sites have found that homes which are advertised with more pictures that potential buyers can review, receive more hits than those with fewer pictures.

Added to this, virtual tours are becoming more and more common as a means of showcasing properties for sale. If your home is being filmed for a virtual tour, you should ensure that it is really being showcased to its best advantage. Aside from ensuring that it is clean and tidy, sellers should, for example, set the dining room table, put the best linen on the beds and have a colourful centrepiece on the kitchen counter. It’s all these little details that add up to make a good impression.

Sellers should consider the showcasing of their property as an interview. This is because it involves presentation and first impressions, which are key factors that can help or hinder a potential sale. Always do what you can to highlight the best features of your home, instead of relying on the fact that potential buyers will notice them of their own accord.

In buyer’s markets, it is especially important to pull out all the stops and make your home stands out above the others on the market. Be objective about why a buyer would choose your home over all the other homes for sale in the area and if you don’t think it’s likely, start by relooking at the three factors as mentioned above.

In this kind of a market, timing is everything as statistics show that a property sold within the first four weeks is generally sold for the seller’s asking price – if it has been priced correctly, is in a good condition and has been showcased to demonstrate its best features. Houses that stay on the market for five to 12 weeks generally sell for 3% less, while those on the market between 13 and 24 weeks sell for up to around 6% less. Houses that have been the market for 24 weeks or more are expected to sell for up to 10% less than the original asking price.

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