Have you ever wanted to know what was on the other side of a photo? Isn’t it just a bit frustrating to have to frame everyone in a group photo? This is one solution virtual reality can provide. 360-degree photos enables people to capture moments in time in it’s fullness. It can transform the way we take pictures with our friends and provide a new avenue for professional photographers to make a living. It is going to be 2017 soon, and we’re going to need a refreshed way to capture the world and it’s moments around us.
This brings me to online photo sharing community, Kuula. Kuula was created to provide a way streamlined way for people to edit their 360 photos.Before we delve into how their picture-editor works, we must understand how an immersive photo is produced. When a 360 camera snaps a photo, it utilizes two lenses opposite of each other, which each capturing a little over 180 degrees of the environment.
When captured, an internal process called “stitching” sews the two halves together, creating a full spherical view. Afterwards, the photo is saved as an JPG, by a conversion process called “equirectangular projection.” In their blog, they explain this by stating, “the concept should be familiar to anyone who’ve ever seen a world map. A world map is a rectangle that represents the surface of a sphere, right? This is exactly how a 360 photo projection works!”
They also list a few cameras to get you started on your immersive photo-capturing adventure, such as Gear 360(for Samsung S6 or S7) and Ricoh Theta S(suitable for most smartphone). If you ever seen an equirectangular photo, you’d notice the distorted edges, like the flat image of the world-map. To help people reconstruct the photo back into the immersive picture it was meant to be, Kuula developed an 360-degree photo player.
When you upload your photo to their online community, you have the option of editing and adding filters to them. One very unique feature they offer is the Tiny Planet Editor. As implied by it’s name, it isolates a 360 degree photo into it’s own little planet, which is better seen on their tiny planet page. You’re not only able to view your photos on their website, but also embed it in another website, blog, Twitter, Facebook and any other online medium.
Thanks for reading!