HD View – free software for teachers in February

Find all 'Free Downloads' on this blog

Some Free February Appy-ness with a new piece of free software for teachers from Microsoft every day in February. Many of these items are unknown heroes, but they all share two things in common: 1) They are useful for teachers or students and 2) they are free.

HD View


So you’ve got a handful of digital cameras. And every student wants to take a photo. How about finding a way to get the students’ work to build up into one big image, rather than lots of individual snaps.

What can it do?

HD View is an image viewer that was created by Microsoft Research, which allows you to display and interact with very large images (the kind of images that have billions of pixels). And you can create these images yourself, and then publish them on the web so that everybody can pan and zoom around them.

If you want to get an idea of what’s possible, take a look at the Harlem HD View (it will prompt you to install the viewer in your browser) or some of the European HD View photography from Bernhard Vogl


How would I use it?

The kind of examples where HD View comes in handy are:

  • You want to upload a high resolution image from a camera, and make it easy to view
    eg you have a 10 megapixel camera, and don’t want to just upload a small version of an image - eg to publish a high resolution photo or scan of a student’s artwork
  • You want to make a super-high resolution panorama
    eg you create landscape panoramas for geography lessons, using programmes like Windows Live Photo Gallery or Microsoft Image Composite Editor, where you want to be able to go from a wide angle view, right down to looking at individual geographic features in the rocks.
  • You want to put lots of different images together into a single image
    eg you have a panorama of your school art show, and you want to give people the ability to zoom right in; or your students create a timeline that you want to be able to zoom in and out of

Where can I find out how to use it?

In addition to the ‘Create your own HD View Content’ page on the HD View website, there are also so great tips on the HD View blog (like how to create the amazing panorama below from a video and a series of tutorials for the Image Composite Editor)

HDView Snow Jump


Where do I get HD View from?

HD View itself is a plug-in for your web browser, which gets downloaded when people go to look at the content you create. What you do need to get are the tools you create the HD View images in - all the options, including the Photoshop add-in, are here

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