(posted to the OSM mailing list already so apologies if you’ve seen this…)
Some of you might remember a talk I gave on OpenTrailView - a site which allows users to upload panoramas with the aim of producing something vaguely like StreetView for off-road routes such as footpaths and other trails - at SOTM 2010 in Girona. The problem with it however was the long-winded and difficult approach to contributing the panoramas, which had to be stitched using third-party software and placed by recording a GPS track at the same time and comparing timestamps.
Recently however as you may know Photo Spheres have been added to Android, which allow users to take spherical 360 degree panoramas. As long as the phone’s device is on, these can be positioned automatically. Consequently, my interest in OpenTrailView has been revived and I’m trying to do a bit more work on it.
The site is at www.opentrailview.org. Currently you can upload and view photo spheres; it works on current versions of Firefox and Chrome as well as IE10. (sorry, not older versions of IE just yet). Opera kind-of works but there are 1 or 2 issues.
The aim (not implemented yet) is to allow users to connect photo spheres together with a simple editor using a base OSM map for guidance. This will allow vaguely streetview-style “virtual tours” of off road routes to be implemented. I was originally aiming to do this automatically with underlying OSM data but this would lead to issues such as a) the need to set up a postgis database containing the whole world and b) due to a single trail maybe consisting of many individual ways, this process is likely to be slow without installing an additional routing-orientated database, further increasing server hardware requirements.
A few photospheres have been uploaded already, mostly near the default location but 1 or 2 others by users in Germany and Italy. Some of the photospheres are not brilliant quality as I’ve just been experimenting!
www.opentrailview.org/about.html gives full info (including current issues) and including how to download the photosphere camera if you have a non-Nexus Android 4 phone.