Forum : New Feature Suggestions/Requests

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Topic: Make Photosynth Work on a Mac!

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dariusmonsef (Over 1 year ago)
You can view Photosynths on a Mac with our Silverlight viewer. (http://photosynth.net/silverlight/photosynth.aspx)

We are continually working on improving this viewing experience and it is getting close to being as good or better than our native viewer.  Creating synths is a bit of a bigger challenge, but you can create a synth using Bootcamp or VMWare Fusion 2.
sirpatrick (Over 1 year ago)
I am running this on a mac. However, I have to use an PC emulator to run photosynth to upload synths
mdalam (Over 1 year ago)
i would like to create photosynth on macBook
NateLawrence (Over 1 year ago)
mdalam, you'll need to install Windows on your MacBook.

You can use either Boot Camp or something like Parallels or VMWare Fusion, but my recommendation is Boot Camp, so that you can dedicate as much RAM + processing power as possible to Photosynth.
netwho (Over 1 year ago)
What a joke, installing windows for Photosynth usage. I'm not even going to install silverlight on any of my systems. I still use photosynth for capturing, but share a cut down picture e.g. on facebook without anything special. It's 2013 and the time os over for proprietary broweser extension.

Dear Microsoft, the only way to make this work is changing to a standard technology for the  viewer .... HTML5?!?
Nathanael (Over 1 year ago)
@netwho, you obviously don't understand what this conversation is about.

We are talking about the real original Photosynth on Windows which does the computation necessary to generate the poses of different camera positions relative to what they photographed as well as a 3D point cloud model of what was photographed.

Although Photosynth.net supports uploading both photosynths and panoramas and their mobile app is only strong enough to create and view panoramas, this conversation is about photosynths - not panoramas.

The original (and still the best) photosynth viewer was a Direct3D program that ran as a browser plugin. Since Direct3D is a Windows graphics technology, it only worked on Windows. 

So that Mac users could view photosynths, the Photosynth team rewrote their viewer in Silverlight in 2009, but since Silverlight doesn't use the GPU the Silverlight viewer was actually a step backward for Windows users of Photosynth.
Nathanael (Over 1 year ago)
In 2010 the ability to upload panoramas instead of only photosynths was added to Photosynth.net and the Silverlight viewer was updated to handle opening either photosynths or panoramas. It still was not as good as Microsoft's original panorama viewer, HDView, ( http://bit.ly/msrhdview ) but it was an easy way for the average user to share panoramas.

In 2011 the mobile panorama app was released in April and the first version of their HTML5 panorama viewer was released to work with Mobile Safari in June. http://bit.ly/psfhtmlpv

2011 also saw a project start up at Bing Maps, called Read/Write World which aimed to build a single viewer which opened photos, panoramas, photosynths, videos, etc. and would be implemented in native code for apps, CSS3 3D Transforms, WebGL, and Silverlight for the web. http://youtube.com/readwriteworld 

Sadly Read/Write World went dark in 2012.
Nathanael (Over 1 year ago)
In 2012 the HTML5 panorama viewer was updated to work in Internet Explorer 10 on Windows Phone 8 and later to work with Internet Explorer 10 on desktops and laptops.

Also in 2012, Bing began occasionally showing interactive spherical panoramas as their image of the day, using a version of the HTML5 viewer developed during the Read/Write World days. 
http://blogs.msdn.com/photosynth/archive/2012/10/26/bing-s-pano-bling.aspx
http://www.realityprime.com/blog/2012/10/panoramas-on-bing-com/

The HTML5 viewer introduced in 2011 still does not open photosynths because HTML5 does not offer adequate processing power to render the point clouds or even as many quads as are generally available in a photosynth.

WebGL would probably be a good technology choice for a new photosynth viewer even though it's not a W3C web standard technology, but Internet Explorer does not yet support it. Sadly, WebGL demos do not even work reliably between browsers which do support it.
Nathanael (Over 1 year ago)
As far as you choosing to not install Silverlight on your computers, of course no one can force you to, although the HTML5 panorama viewer is inferior to the Silverlight viewer in features. https://twitter.com/photosynth/status/291298738331320320

Photosynth is not using Silverlight for their viewer to try to force a "proprietary browser extension" on you. 

(In case you haven't noticed, Microsoft discontinued Silverlight development and made the choice to support standards tech on the web and for building native apps back in 2011.)

Photosynth is using Silverlight for their viewer, simply because years ago when they had the resources to have a team of developers working full time, they were using Silverlight as their cross platform technology, HTML5 wasn't released yet, and not enough mobile users had smartphones yet to change that choice. These days, Photosynth's team is small and progress is slow and sporadic.
Nathanael (Over 1 year ago)
To be honest, I doubt that "HTML5" (I'll assume you're referring to HTML5 Canvas, CSS3 3D Transforms and Javascript when you use the term) has enough power to satisfactorily render photosynths. I'm sure that it can handle panoramas well enough, since they're just a texture mapped cube, but single panoramas isn't (or hasn't been) what Photosynth was primarily about.

I'm all for Photosynth.net using web standards tech where it will give a good experience, but they don't have a huge unlimited budget and development team. They are essentially a charity project of Bing Maps - one that seems to me to be running on fumes, I am sorry to say. The truth is that with Silverlight, they could write their viewer once and it would work the same in multiple browsers on both Windows and OSX. With HTML5, they have to customize their pano viewer for each browser on each OS that they support - a bigger workload for a smaller team.
ReadWriteWorld (Over 1 year ago)
Until such a time as the Photosynth team is given funding and time to work on their site and apps full time again, the Silverlight viewer is what users like you and I have available for us to use. The Silverlight viewer was created specifically because of Mac users. You aren't hurting anyone at Microsoft's feelings by not installing Silverlight or changing their minds. Their minds are already changed. You're basically just dooming yourself to non-interactive viewing of your panoramas on the web.

As for a Photosynth application to upload panoramas and photosynths from MacOSX, again, it's not going to happen unless the Photosynth team can get some serious funding to hire developers. Believe me, I'd like a Photosynth app in the Windows Store so that Surface RT users could upload content as well, but we're in the same fix that Mac users are.

If you want to use the HTML5 pano viewer, such as it is, on MacOSX, change Safari's user agent to iPad from the Developer menu.
Nathanael (Over 1 year ago)
Until such a time as the Photosynth team is given funding and time to work on their site and apps full time again, the Silverlight viewer is what users like you and I have available for us to use. The Silverlight viewer was created specifically because of Mac users. You aren't hurting anyone at Microsoft's feelings by not installing Silverlight or changing their minds. Their minds are already changed. You're basically just dooming yourself to non-interactive viewing of your panoramas on the web.

As for a Photosynth application to upload panoramas and photosynths from MacOSX, again, it's not going to happen unless the Photosynth team can get some serious funding to hire developers. Believe me, I'd like a Photosynth app in the Windows Store so that Surface RT users could upload content as well, but we're in the same fix that Mac users are.

If you want to use the HTML5 pano viewer, such as it is, on MacOSX, change Safari's user agent to iPad from the Developer menu.
SandraHawkins (3 months ago)
If the Silverlight viewer was created specifically because of Mac users, and I as a MacBook 10.8.5, intel processor user have installed Silverlight, why can I still not play slide shows in Photosynth?
SandraHawkins (3 months ago)
I have installed Silverlight viewer on my Mac but still cannot play slideshows in Photosynth. Why?
I have already been to this sight and downloaded and installed Silverlight. You can view Photosynths on a Mac with our Silverlight viewer. (http://photosynth.net/silverlight/photosynth.aspx)
NateLawrence (3 months ago)
Hi, Sandra, 

Microsoft stopped working on Silverlight over two years ago now and so as web browsers have updated, they no longer work as well with Silverlight as they once did.

I just tried loading a small test synth in Safari, Firefox, and Chrome on an Intel iMac. 

Safari didn't fully load the viewer, however both Firefox and Chrome did load and play the synth. If you have Firefox or Chrome on your laptop, I would certainly give them a try. For some reason the viewer does take much longer than normal to load on a Mac, but it will still work.

::

On a different note, have you taken a look at the Photosynth 2014 Technical Preview? http://photosynth.net/preview

It calculates the photosynths on the website servers instead of requiring you to run the Windows desktop application to make and upload them.

Their new viewer uses WebGL which will work on a Mac in Firefox, Chrome, and Safari (although you'll need to manually enable WebGL in Safari).
NateLawrence (3 months ago)
You will need to apply for access to the Preview (which may take a day or two to be approved) but then you can upload photos to make synths directly through your web browser from Windows, MacOS, or Linux.

Here are some helpful videos to get you started.
Video Tutorial: http://bit.ly/howtosynth2
Expert Shooting Guide: http://bit.ly/newphotosynthguide

Video Demo with David: http://bit.ly/photosynth2demo
Video Demo with Blaise: http://bit.ly/photosynth2teddemo

Preview's 'Help' page: http://photosynth.net/preview/help
Preview's 'About' page: http://photosynth.net/preview/about

You can come and give feedback specifically on the Technical Preview at this forum: 
http://photosynth.net/forum.aspx?cat=00581351-82d8-438d-a37b-7eadb3fb4991
MOOPBREDA (1 month ago)
Go F*** yourself, Microsoft. My understanding is that because of your inferior aptitude and/or effort, you have a lot of hatred for those companies who actually care about their customer's satisfaction. However, you've made your point. Now it's time to grow up and DO YOUR JOB!!! I should repeat my thesis: Go F*** yourself, Microsoft. You are absolutely pathetic, and your company's attitude and conduct is a drain on our entire civilization. How do you sleep at night? My guess is on a bed stuffed with the unread and shredded transcripts of your customer's complaints. Kill yourselves, before you infect your children with proud mediocracy, parasites!!! It's the only worthy legacy you'll ever have.
NateLawrence (1 month ago)
Hi, Moopbreda, 

In case there's been some misunderstanding, I am not a Microsoft or Photosynth employee. 
I am only a Photosynth user who uses both Windows and Mac OSX and is trying to help his fellow users.

The earliest post in this thread is from Darius Monsef in 2009 who Microsoft actually hired in 2008 to come be Photosynth's community manager.

NetWho's reply from March 2013 is nearly two years after Photosynth published their HTML 5 panorama viewer for mobile browsers.
The reason their HTML 5 pano viewer hasn't replaced the Silverlight viewer on their main site is because it isn't yet as fast or fully featured for panoramas and for several years Photosynth was not actively developed. In mid-2013 they started developing their site again.

Please read my latest reply before your (completely inappropriately worded) rant to see that Photosynth's next generation of tech is usable on any operating system from any HTML5 web browser. http://photosynth.net/preview
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