Here’s the project’s mission statement:
Project Tripod allows you to easily take photos of things that change over time with your phone – no need for specific camera equipment or a physical tripod to be setup.
We use our API to stitch together the images taken of the project so they are aligned, it doesn’t matter if the pictures are taken by one or many people or over intervals that can be days, weeks or even years.
This makes it really easy to visually monitor progress of projects and create things like long term time lapses and more.
With Project Tripod it is simple to take photos of things that change over time.
Using a simple ‘align things by eye with an overlaid image’ UI (based on the first photo to be taken at any specific scene – this becomes the ‘alignment image’), Project Tripod, with enough love and attention, could grow to become a valuable global time lapse tool, watching cities, gardens and nature scenes grow (and in some cases) die.
It’s extremely early days though – only ONE existing tripod in the whole of the UK, and that was just from a Microsoft campus office, plus most other available tripods seem to be ‘test’ shots like my own below. Still, best to stay optimistic here.
I really like the trend in modern apps for a slick one-time intro – Project Tripod does this really well….
Hmmm…. good news and bad news. The bad – there’s only ONE tripod in my country. The good – it’s only two miles away! The bad – it’s taken from inside a Microsoft office, so there’s no point in me going there! Early days, etc.
This, and most other tripods currently up, do seem to be ‘test’ images….
Step one in creating a new tripod is to use the built-in camera interface to take the establishing/alignment image…
Step two is to sign into Project Tripod using MS, Google or Facebook credentials…
Fill in some details and then you’re ready to upload, for others to see. Note that ‘private’ tripods are a premium feature – presumably for commercial use, since most users are expected to be consumers partaking in the worldwide public project…
Revisiting the scene at a later date, you (or others) align the image by eye – in theory standing in the exact same spot…. Here I’m just working out the right position and angle…
After uploading, there’s a short server-side processing cycle and then your tripod is live to the world; (right) once you have multiple images for a tripod, creative options like this become possible.
One worry (other than coverage and critical mass) is that the images produced are necessarily of low resolution because of the way they’re aligned, by eye, on a phone screen. Such approaches are limited to the resolution of the screen and to the capability of the user’s eyesight – the Project Tripod team does say that their server “runs over the images to ensure they are fully aligned“, but some reassurance about the algorithms used and higher resolution capabilities would be nice.
From the Project Tripod app description:
The world is constantly changing, but to the naked eye it’s imperceptible. Project Tripod enables anyone to capture and visualise this change.
Trying to take a series of photographs of something again and again over time is incredibly difficult.
You’d need to go back to the exact same spot as you’ve taken a photo from previously and hold the camera in exactly the same place to re-take that photo again so you can see the differences. Short of having left a physical tripod in that spot (which the authorities don’t tend to let you do) it’s nearly impossible!
Well, that was before Project Tripod and its Virtual Tripods.
Project Tripod will make Physical Tripods Extinct by giving everyone:
• Ability to take perfectly aligned snaps over time – be it seconds, weeks, months or years – without needing a physical tripod!
• Anyone with the app can add to these Virtual Tripods
• Which means they are adding to and viewing a living history – an endless book with endless chapters
• You can Chronicle milestones – man made (buildings, damns, infrastructure) or natural (flora and ecosystems)
• With the images that are collected, you can create beautiful art using the in app tools
• And use the social Sharing aspects to share your creations & tripods with the world.
Project Tripod is currently free and the team says in its FAQ: “The app will be free to download and install. There will be options to upgrade and also buy additional add ins as we build them but our intention is to keep this as a free product for consumers“.
You can grab it here in the Windows Phone Store.