Industry NewsTechnology

A new kind of real estate walk-through

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SAN FRANCISCO -- Real estate agents and brokers hoping to take photo slideshows to another dimension may want to give Photosynth a try. Photosynth is free Web software that allows users to stitch photos together to create 3-D, immersive renderings that consumers can click, drag and zoom in and out of.Photosynth is a brainchild of Microsoft's Live Labs, a collaboration between MSN and Microsoft Research. Live Labs founder and director, Dr. Gary Flake, spoke to attendees at Real Estate Connect last week. "Photosynth is not passive. It's like a video game where users can choose the way they go," Flake said. A "synth" of a house for sale, for example, can function as a virtual home tour with consumers able to use an arrow key to "walk" around a house, or they can simply click and drag their way around rooms. Consumers can see a 360-degree image of the outside of a house as well as recognize how rooms inside the home fit together. The software recognizes...