Industry NewsTechnology

Virtual tour company builds floor plans with lasers

Agent seeks Internet edge in small island market

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The revolution in online interactive mapping tools empowers home buyers with a great view ... of roofs. And while mapping can satiate the thirst for "location, location, location" information, real estate agents know that what's on the inside counts, too. There are many ways to display home interiors online: slide shows and 360-degree panorama views, virtual tours and full-motion digital videos, interactive floor plans and street-level photos, and multimedia hybrids that incorporate a number of technologies. For J.R. Crawford, a John L. Scott real estate agent in Vashon, Wash., the choice in virtual tour technology was all about standing out in a real estate market that has more agents than property listings. The island community of Vashon, in Washington's Puget Sound, has about 10,000 residents, 32 property listings and 60 real estate agents, Crawford says. "I was looking for an edge -- How can I get my listings out there to other people who don't know about the Puget Sound?" She look...