President Obama's inauguration in 3D courtesy of Microsoft

Yesterday we reported that CNN would be using Microsoft's PhotoSynth technology to stitch together thousands of submitted photos to create a 3D environment of Obama's inauguration.

The end result is fairly impressive, the technology takes all the submitted images from thousands of sources and angles to create a 360 degree visual image that can be viewed from different angles. The image has zoom in and out functions from close up and shots taken further back, all with incredible detail.

Microsoft has also created a Live Search Map where people can upload "stitches" and search for different inauguration related "stitches".

PhotoSynth is based technology from a small, Seattle-area startup named Seadragon. Microsoft acquired the company in 2006 and the technology is capable of delivering a buttery smooth experience browsing massive quantities of visual information over the Internet. Photos can range from megapixels to gigapixels and Microsoft's first iPhone app was Seadragon so it's clearly an important technology for the company going forward. This is the first time Microsoft has used this technology on a large scale and at such a high profile event. We'd bet Microsoft will be using this heavily in the future.

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