An anonymous reader writes to tell us that Stanford has a new website that not only shows you how cool their new 3-d modeling system
is, but actually allows you to give it a try
with your own photos. The system can take a 2-d still image and estimate a detailed 3-d structure which you can navigate. "For each small homogeneous patch in the image, we use a Markov Random Field (MRF) to infer a set of "plane parameters" that capture both the 3-d location and 3-d orientation of the patch. The MRF, trained via supervised learning, models both image depth cues as well as the relationships between different parts of the image. Other than assuming that the environment is made up of a number of small planes, our model makes no explicit assumptions about the structure of the scene; this enables the algorithm to capture much more detailed 3-d structure than does prior art (such as Saxena et al., 2005, Delage et al., 2005, and Hoiem et el., 2005), and also give a much richer experience in the 3-d flythroughs created using image-based rendering, even for scenes with significant non-vertical structure."