Microsoft Software Converts Dull First-Person Videos Into Supercool Hyperlapses

Microsoft have developed an algorithm that converts standard, and generally boring, first-person videos into smooth, superfast hyperlapses (time-lapse but with a fluid-flowing camera).

So if you shot some POV GoPro footage of you being, like, totally rad up a mountain but it was all a bit shaky, Microsoft Research's Johannes Kopf, Michael Cohen, and Richard Szeliski have come up with a solution that will fix it.

The software works by stabilizing jerky footage through analysing each frame of the video and finding ones that link together smoothly, then connects these together to create a sleek time-lapse.

They explain how it works below:

Our algorithm first reconstructs the 3D input camera path as well as dense, per-frame proxy geometries. We then optimize a novel camera path for the output video (shown in red) that is smooth and passes near the input cameras while ensuring that the virtual camera looks in directions that can be rendered well from the input. Next, we compute geometric proxies for each input frame. These allow us to render the frames from the novel viewpoints on the optimized path.

Finally, we generate the novel smoothed, time-lapse video by rendering, stitching, and blending appropriately selected source frames for each output frame.

You got that? You can see how well it works in the video above and GIF below, which shows shaky raw footage next to the stabilized versions. Effectively it turns whatever you were filming in first-person (be it walking down the dullest, most industrial road on earth or going for an MTV Cribs-style tour of your home) into something infinitely more watchable.


For more info and technical details head on over to the research page. As Kevin Kelly, founder of Wired, has said ""Very cool tech that will be standard procedure asap." Let's hope so. They plan on releasing the software on Windows phones at some point in the future, then hopefully it'll roll out to other operating systems too. And then we'll all be making our own zombie movies.

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