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Author Topic: Is this possible ?  (Read 892 times)
KevinA
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« on: June 04, 2011, 03:22:52 AM »
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I have taken a series of overlapping still images from a helicopter while tracking a straight line. I would like to turn them into an interactive movie. I would like it to play forward and reverse and to able to zoom in at anytime, I would like this to be at the control of the viewer. So they could zoom in  detail or play the movie zoomed in etc. In other words I want the viewer to be in control. Is this possible and what software would be needed to achieve this?

Kevin.
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fredjeang
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« Reply #1 on: June 04, 2011, 04:42:43 AM »
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Hi Kevin,

Everything is possible, costs will define the right solution, probably not the ideal one.

You don't specify the output, web?

I would go Flash. If I understand you well, you want the viewer to control everything.
Flash is the "easiest" way to acheive this. If it has to be in a dvd, you would like to use Flash + Director.
I warn you that if you have never used Flash or have basic knowledge, it is not going to be that easy and you might want to delegate the work because you would go crazy.
To me, despite the prevision of its death, Flash is still the more flexible platform for what you are looking for and it's not gona disappear tomorrow.
Flash artists are generally not expensive and easy to find. I calculate that for what you want, + or - 1500 euros for a Flash artist should be fine and you get rid-off the hassle.

To acheive your goal, no need of actionscript 3, wich is better and a Flash operator can work in AS2 from beginning to end. For a Flash guru, your requirement is very easy to do, trying to acheive that personaly, you would really loose too much time.

If the Flash operator is friendly, he-she will give you the .FLA (the original Flash file where the codes are generated) so you can re-use the structure for another similar project for free. They generally deliver their .FLA but not everyone does. So, the next time it will cost you the change of the material but not all the work from zero and it should be instead of 1500, something like 3-400 .

Java script is another (free) solution, JQuery has an extensive on-line support. To be honest, it is ok, sometimes very good but those "ready-made" query are aimed to a certain audience-users wich I'm not sure if as a pro you should avoid them. I can not answer to this for anybody. Some will find them fine, others like me are more cautious.
What you have to know with JQuery is that it is a bit like finding a specific branch in the jungle. You can loose an incredible amount of time finding the right module. If someone of this forum had the reliable solution you want in JQuery it will by-pass this long searching. Otherwise I don't recommend this solution.

Then HTML 5 is another new possibility but too new IMO to avoid hassles. Again, you need to find an HTML 5 guru and they do not abund yet.

More complex solutions could be acheived using framework softwares but in the hands of experienced people. cost would be higher with no more spectacular results than Flash so IMO not interesting.

In short, first check Flash, then JQuery for the doubt but give-up fast if you see that nothing araises.

The problem you are going to face anyway is that your perspective will not change wich in movie and-or animation looks really amateur.
So in the end it is a lot of hours (guarantee) for a low-end result, regardless of the quality of your material.

If budget allows (wich generally don't) the pro solution would be to use a 3D software combined with a software like Flame or Nuke and get an all footage in 4K, then use the flash to program the interactivity but then that would be very serious and generally not affordable. This perspective stuff is really an issue.

In this link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j1gAjqno4tE&feature=related it is a good example of how the things should be done before your material would be sended to flash (even if you have stills the steps would be very similars to make it look 3D. That would be the ideal. As you see, it is serious and out of question for the vast majority of us. Going directly to Flash with what you have will work but unfortunatly be flat like Jane Birkin breast.

Now, if having this sort of flat roadmap visual is not an issue, it can be done for relatively cheap.

My super, hyper, mega advice is: use Flash and delegate this yes or yes.
 


Ps: I forgot another point: if your images are part of the same sequence, no need of different stories, I strongly recommend to merge them in a single image and this merged panoramic image will be the one you will give to the Flash artist. The image size does not matter, the biggest the best but the resolution has to be web res. That will avoid you problems.

If different stories are needed, for example if user press B then go to scene 2, you will do the same merging for all the images that belong to the same sequence or scene. So the planning is very important.

As an example: user is starting at "merged-images-1", your opening movie where he-she can zoom in-out, play the movie back etc... On a part of this scenery, there is a button that says for example: "enter in the building"
then, pressing, you go to scene 2 (building interior) and you are now at "merged-images-2" wich will be all the images that you want the viewer to navigate in that particular scenery, in this case interior shots.

Also, you want to be very clear about the zoom in and out and it has to defined your visual area (the area that see the user), and the real image area. Let's say your image is 1m2 at its max res. You need to tell the Flash artist to load the movie at 0.5m2, means you have another 0.5m2 to zoom in and zoom-out will be defined by your visual area. But never exceed in the zoom-in the max dimention of your movie because it is going to look crap, exactly like when you see a pic at 300% magnification. Those are the kind of indications you need to give to the person in charge.

But each scene is a single image. You see what I mean? So, this is indeed where your work lays, merging all your images according to your story-board BEFORE you give them to the Flash artist. Being very clear about how you name them and of course give a copy of the story-board with all the relevant indications.
« Last Edit: June 04, 2011, 02:36:13 PM by fredjeang » Logged
KevinA
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« Reply #2 on: June 05, 2011, 10:43:19 AM »
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Thanks Fred, that's about as comprehensive an answer as I could wish for.

Kevin.
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Kevin.
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