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Integrated Videos and Maps for Driving Directions – Microsoft

New development on the navigation gadget front. This time it comes from Microsoft and that is in it self a bit surprising. So far the company has not been closely linked with navigation. In general they are trailing behind everyone, generally trying to improve the stuff other have developed and promoted. In this sense this β€˜new’ development has to be looked at.
The research featured as an article on Technology review this week where its chef researcher Billy Chen introduces us to the concept. They are using video for driving directions. Instead of Google Street View, they are playing video recordings of the route in Microsoft Virtual Earth. The research is partly about the recording and synchronising of the map a video, but partly also about the influence of this method for direction instructions. The results of course claim that the animated instructions enable participants to find the route easier, with 70% to 60% for participants who were instructed only with image (Google images I presume).

Image by Microsoft – (a) Original spacing of panoramas. (b) Final spacing of video frames, after slowing down at landmarks/turns and speeding up between. (c) Straight ahead orientation. (d) Final orientation with look ahead. (e) Widening the view and freezing the landmark thumbnail.

However, the paper written about the project can be found HERE. It has to be noted, that it i not simply a replayed clop. An important feature of the software is the way it focuses on landmark and guides the users view files. It is not a passive record that has just followed the movement. Rather it is a carefully calculated section of the 360 Degree recording. Through this movement emphasis is put on certain aspect along the route, say a landmark. This means that the route somehow has to be processed and interpreted. How quickly and with what kind of system the software can be rolled out is not clear,