Monday, June 28, 2010

Virtual Tour of Florence

360 panorama of Florence from Giotto's CampanileFlorence from Giotto's Campanile. 360 panorama (c) Peter Watts - all rights reserved

Florence is one of the top travel and tourist destinations in Italy. At the heart of Tuscany, and once the capital of a united Italy, Florence is full of history, historical buildings and famous works of art. This new Florence virtual tour shows 360 panoramas of the sights and attractions, churches, public squares and other views.

360 panorama of Florence from Santa Trinita BridgeFlorence from Ponte Santa Trinita. 360 panorama (c) Peter Watts - all rights reserved

As usual with Panoramic Earth, these 50+ images are all accompanied with some local and travel information, and can be embedded by other websites as their own content. Included within the tour are stunning panoramas taken around Florence Cathedral, including a unique virtual tour of the interior of the Baptistery of San Giovanni, taken as not even local Florentines see it, without people present.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Viewing 360 Panoramas on iPad and iPhone

Krpano has been quick to take up the challenge of providing a way to view 360 panoramas on iPhone and iPad devices. Neither the iPhone or iPad support Flash, preventing many applications most web users take for granted, including the most popular panorama viewers, from working on them.

Krpano have already released a Javascript based viewer that uses CSS 3D transforms to display the panoramas. Currently there are still limitations, the CSS 3D transforms used are only available as Webkit extensions in the Mobile Safari and in the Mac Safari Browsers, and the viewer will only work with Cubic panoramas.

No doubt, further developments will follow, and it will not be long before Spherical, Equirectangular, Cylindrical, Small Planet, Partial panoramas and all the other projections we like to play around with will work on these mobile devices. At Panoramic Earth, we will follow this with keen interest, and are already seeking ways of implementing this for the panoramas we have.

Flash will probably still remain popular for many panorama viewers, but this demonstrates once again how fast technology moves on the web, and how quickly developers respond to the new opportunities and challenges.

New Panoramas on Panoramic Earth