Interactive Images transform Photojournalism
Aqueti is developing core infrastructure to enable more effective and engaging photojournalism. Patented and patent-pending Aqueti technologies include (1) ultrawide field high resolution cameras, (2) decompressive image inference and image data management software and (3) cloud services for efficient delivery of digitally zoomable images. In collaboration with media partners, Aqueti aims to create profoundly engaging experiences that hold readers and, rather than dispersing images to blogs and social sites, pull readers in from these sites to embedded interactive media.
Current standard practice embeds highly downsampled and compressed images in online magazines and newspapers. This practice robs the reader of the true value of the image. Furthermore, since these thumbnail images are easily copied and reposted in blogs and social media, the practice degrades the bond between publisher and readers.
The need for image upsampling is a particularly important point that is widely misunderstood even among experienced photographers. Image compression is so deeply ingrained in the tradition of digital image processing that photographers and publishers seldom stop to consider the damage this process is inflicting on the communication of image data. In fact, showing an image at its native capture resolution degrades the resolution communicated to the viewer by as much as 50%. Ideally, a 10 megapixel raw image should be upsampled to 90 megapixels or more to avoid this loss. While 90 megapixel displays are unavailable, arbitrarily large effective displays may be created using interactive image servers.
As an example, consider the image shown below from the recent World Cup match between the United States and Ghana. The raw photograph is 15 megapixels, but it is shown here upsampled and frequency balanced at 132 megapixels. Pinch to zoom on a phone, mouse over scroll to zoom online or use the controls embedded in the image.
In view of the many very high quality images taken of sporting events with conventional cameras, there is a massive opportunity to create efficient super-resolved digitally zoomable interfaces. Using Aqueti intellectual property, first movers in this space may exclusively define the future of online multimedia and reader engagement.