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Trouble report 21

Improper stitch, no overlap

Versions affected

V1.0, V1.1, V1.2.

Description

I have attempted five different panoramas using Pan Factory. Two of them resulted in good quality panoramas. However, in the three other cases, Pan Factory stitches (one or more pair of images in each of the three) with only a few degrees of overlap, when there is 50% overlap in the images.

Workaround

Manually align the image pairs.

See Step 4 -- Fine tune the stitched image under Making a panorama, step by step in the help for instructions on correcting the overall alignment. You need to start by opening the overlap region.  You click on its top or bottom edge (see the Stitch command in the Help).

When the overlap region is very narrow, it can be difficult to click on the top or bottom edge.  You can give the overlap region a little width by stretching one side or the other.  This will make it easier to click on the top or bottom.

Status

Fixed in V1.3.

On some image pairs V1.2 of The Panorama Factory seems to determine that overlapping just one column of pixels is the best solution.

V1.3 allows setting a minimum overlap percentage.  If you typically overlap 25% for example, setting this parameter to 20% will eliminate the possiblity of The Panorama Factory choosing a solution with a very small overlap.  See Alignment properties dialog  (Tools menu).

 

The automatic aligner is not perfect.  Rather than trying to get it to work perfectly on all images (an impossible task I think), I settled for making it work well on most images.

I think that people and computers should each do what they are good at.  People are very good at the kind of pattern matching required for the alignment problem-- much better (and faster) than computer software (mine at least).  Computers are good at the tedium.  So the software should do all the easy image pairs while you do something else (read the paper, drink coffee, etc.) and you can step in to correct its mistakes.  It is a very hard problem to write software that can do as good a job as you can at this particular task.


Revised: April 28, 2004

 1999-2005 Smoky City Design, LLC and John Strait