High-Resolution Photographic VR Objects Delivered Over Limited Bandwidth Using Streaming Image Technology

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The usefulness of high-resolution photo-realistic virtual objects, such as those made with QTVR technology has been limited by the very large file sizes involved and hence lengthy downloads over typical Internet connections. Several "streaming" image formats have been developed that facilitate high-resolution image distribution by using an image pyramid system. In these systems, a low-resolution image is initially downloaded. Zooming in on this image brings in additional image data to create a higher resolution image in the zoomed region. Zooming further, or panning the image brings in additional data as needed. This dialog between client and server means that only the image data that is needed is downloaded, speeding download times while permitting high-resolution viewing. We have used one of these commercially available systems, "Zoomify" to produce high-resolution anatomical VR objects which can be effectively viewed over limited bandwidth connections. The advantages of this system are its simple PhotoShop plug-in interface, ability to process static 2D images as well as VR objects and panoramas, and versatile deployment via QuickTime, Zoomify Plug-in/ActiveX, Java, or a "clientless" Perl CGI.


Presented at the 15th Slice of Life Workshop, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.