Turn photos into a real-world 3D object

When I first watched Star Wars a long time ago, I was mesmerized by hologram technology. A hologram is a three-dimensional image formed by the interference of light beams from a laser or other coherent light source by its definition. Note that when the first Star Wars movies came out from 1977 through 1983, there was no solution available to make 3D object alive in a personal computer. So when Princess Leia was popped up from R2D2’s hologram projection, I was quite shocked by the possibility of a 3D object in a real world.


Since iPhone revolutionized the way of taking photos to most people, image processing technology has been advanced immensely. One of the image processing technologies I take benefit from is a panorama.  You can take several photos of the same place, then stitch images together to make one image that shows more than typical camera lens can capture.

Multiple photos were taken to make this one photo.

Years ago, this was only possible by a few photoshop experts by editing layers of photos. But now most smartphones support panorama picture mode. While you take photos from left to right until smartphone’s built-in camera app guideline ends, your app does image processing in the backend and show you panorama photo results right away.

iPhone made this panorama photo. (at Colorado national park.)
iPhone makes a panorama photo in real time.
iPhone makes a panorama photo in real time.

Other than panorama image purpose, photo(or images) stichting technology is used to build high-resolution image or a map from satellite photos. And one more thing.

Aerial images by drones

Recently while drones are getting more advanced, satellite images don’t actually need satellites anymore. Instead, people started using drones with a high-resolution camera. It’s quite useful but there is just one problem. With image stitching technology, we can’t have 3-dimensional results, therefore, we don’t get topographic information from drone images.


Here comes another technology to solve this problem. Did you know that we can make a 3D object model from a number of photos? Of course, there is a 3D scanner to make a 3D object but a 3D scanner is useless to create a 3D map (topographic map) The technology is available but this requires a very powerful computing power for image processing. But we found a solution to make this much easier yet more accurate.  With this technology, not only we can make 3D aerial images with drones but also make any objects into a 3d model by simply taking photos. Imaging you can turn any photos into 3D objects without having to scan objects. This will allow us to target many vertical markets.

We will introduce this solution in our next episode.