It’s not exactly rocket science, but it’s close.
A photographer using camera technology developed by NASA for its Mars rovers shot a panoramic image of President Barack Obama’s Jan. 20 inauguration in Washington, D.C., capturing the event in such detail viewers can read the words on spectators’ caps.
The 1,474-megapixel photo is posted online where those who attended the historic event can try to find themselves among the 2 million or so people in the crowd.
To see the image, which enables viewers to pan across the frame and zoom in and out, go to http://gigapan.org/viewGigapan.php?id=15374. Photographer David Bergman used a Gigapan camera to shoot the shot, according to NASA. The technology was created to photograph the Martian landscape in such detail that geologists remotely exploring the red planet could tilt their vehicles’ cameras 180 degrees, pan 360 degrees and zoom in to view specific features in detail.
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Computer software weaves the cameras’ captured 1-megapixel images together to create a panorama.
The Mars mission led Randy Sargent of NASA’s Ames Research Center, Illah Nourbakhsh of Carnegie Mellon University and Rich LeGrand of Charmed Labs LLC to develop the Gigapan system Bergman used.
Having no tripod, the photographer attached the camera to a railing. NASA says the inauguration photo took 15 minutes to shoot and includes 220 individual shots combined to make the panorama.