December 22, 2006

Props for Auto-Align/Blend in CS3

Panorama photographer Hans Nyberg has posted an overview comparing the new Photoshop Auto-Align Layers/Auto-Blend Layers functionality to other tools. "This is a real ‘Christmas Gift’ to us panorama photographers," he writes.  "Incredibly fast and with very intelligent blending which outperforms all the blenders we have used until now."

Regarding the Load Files Into Stack script I posted earlier this week, I forgot to point out that choosing File->Automate-> Photomerge does the same process in one shot.  Engineer John Peterson writes,

Now, if you want to click ‘n drag ‘n re-arrange, the bottom left side of the Photomerge file section dialog has an "interactive" option for the familiar Photomerge interactive dialog. But really, the new alignment algorithm is generally good enough that you’ll rarely need it.

And about the "Advanced Blending" checkbox? If it’s on (the default) you’ll get the seamless blending and exposure matching Edit > Auto-blend does. If it’s off, you’ll get simple rectangular blend masks (that you can easily modify or remove) and pixels left as-is, ready to re-touch by hand if you so choose.

Also, engineer Jeff Chien would like to point out that after running Auto-Blend Layers you may observe some visible seams when zoomed way out, but that these are just a redraw artifact; i.e. at 100% magnification they disappear.

On related notes:

  • LiveScience reports that Australian scientist Piers Barnes has calculated the number of photos that need to be taken to ensure at least one blink-free photo: "For groups of less than 20 people, divide the number of people in the group by 3 if the light is good or by 2 if the light is bad.  Take that number of shots and you will have a better than 95 percent chance of getting at least one good one."  Hmm–sounds like the new tools could help here. [Via]
  • John P. points out the interesting photo project "Lignières: Then and Now,"
    an effort to overlay current images of a small Swiss village with those from the 19th century. The current process is painstaking and manual, and it would be fun to see how Auto-Align might be able to help arrange & transform images to fit.
9:42 PM | Permalink | Comments [3]

Photoshop CS3 mini-SDK released

It’s critical that Adobe help developers get up to speed in updating their plug-ins to run natively on Intel-based Macs, so we’ve posted a Photoshop CS3 mini-SDK that contains the needed info.  The SDK, along with the CS and CS2 versions, is a free download once you fill out a simple form.

We’ve been working with many developers for several months, and some plug-ins (e.g. Noise Ninja) have aready been updated to run natively.  Hopefully the wide exposure of the public beta will help the needed info reach the developers we haven’t already been able to contact.

On a related note, developers may want to update their plug-ins to be able run as non-destructive Smart Filters in CS3.  The docs are a bit scarce on this point since we wanted to focus on the Mac/Intel issues, but the Dissolve example in the SDK includes the Smart Filter flag.

[Update: Developers can discuss the SDK and related work on the CS3 Labs forum or via the mailing list.]

1:22 PM | Permalink | Comments [5]
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