Show image location
Making panoramic images
Command line options
The gnomonic projection
(This page contains some notes about sharing images, in particular
sharing spherical 360° images on various platforms. Please let me know what’s unclear,
here, so I can improve this page and also decide on how to enhance
PanGazer to make it easier to share images.)
All images saved by PanGazer can be uploaded to ‘social media’ and
other applications just like any other image. Further, some platforms
and applications (including Flickr, Google Maps, and FaceBook) are
able to display spherical panorama images like PanGazer: they allow
you to pan around the image, for example.
Applications that can display spherical images typically have size
and other requirements for uploaded images (see “Application requirements”
below for specific applications). Assuming you have an existing
spherical panorama (similar to the PanGazer ‘starter’ image; see
also Making panoramic images), some or all of the following steps
may be needed:
- Check whether the panorama has North set; if it does you should
see compass bearings overlaid at the top of the screen
and the status at top right will show a Bearing (rather than Yaw).
(Note that these displays can be set off explicitly or toggled on/off
using the Space Bar – see the General Settings page for details).
If North is not set, you should set it (see the Setting North page
for details). Some platforms require that North be set and others
will probably make use of the information in due course.
Note also that if you want to adjust the colouring, contrast, etc.,
of a panorama using some other program then it is best to do that
before the following steps.
- In general, drone panorama images are large (typically 20,000 pels
(pixels) wide, or more) and are too large or are unnecessarily detailed
for many applications. It is often wise, therefore, to make a reduced-size
copy of your image (this will also shorten upload time).
To do this, use the Image → Save image at reduced size ...
menu option (usually a reduction to 1/2 size will be sufficient).
This will save the image at the smaller size and then show the new
image in a new window – from that window you can complete the final
- Drone panorama images are often limited to around 40° above
the horizon but some applications (e.g., FaceBook) require that the
image be a ‘true sphere’ (provide data for the full 90° above
and below the horizon), and, unlike PanGazer, most (if not all) also
require matching Extensible Metadata Platform (XMP) metadata. Both
of these requirements are satisfied by using the Image → Save
image as sphere ... menu option. This will add imagery as necessary,
save the image with updated metadata, and then show the new image
in a new window.
(If the image is already a full sphere the XMP data, including the
view angles, will have been updated by either of the other saving
methods so this step is not necessary, but it is probably good practice
to use it in case there is an anomaly in the image geometry.)
For more details on saving at reduced size or as a sphere, see Saving images.
I’m designing a dialog box that will let you combine the second and
third steps above into a single interaction with more control over
image size; it will probably be used for all saving of images. All
The requirements enforced by applications are generally poorly documented
(sometimes inconsistently) and change over time, so please take these
notes as ‘best guess’ – and do please let me know of anything that
Just upload the image saved at step 3 above using the ‘Upload photo’
icon at top right while viewing ‘You’ (your photostream). There does
not seem to be a size limit.
Just upload the image saved at step 3 above using the ‘Photo/Video’
button or icon when creating a post. There does not seem to be a
size limit, but it is worth reducing the size because Facebook only
shows a small picture window. Note also that Facebook may choose
an arbitrary centre point, unrelated to North or the centre of the
- Google Maps
Google Maps shows uploaded images using a small blue circle on Street
View (click on the ‘little yellow man’ while browsing Google Maps,
or use the Street View app on a smartphone). Once you have contributed
an image to Google Maps/Street view, anyone can find it and view
Google Maps has a size limit on uploaded images. Various Google
sites describe different limits, but images up to 12,000 pels wide
seem to be acceptable (the image dimensions are shown in the status
area at bottom right of the PanGazer screen). If your saved image
is wider than this try reduction to 1/2-size first (see step 2 above);
if this is too large the image will be ‘rejected by server’ when
you upload it – then try a smaller size.
Google Maps does accept spherical images saved by PanGazer (using
version 1.38 or later) that are not full spheres; however the ‘missing’
data above the drone’s angle of view is shown with a black fill;
PanGazer’s fill algorithm, as generated during Step 3 above, is usually
The uploading interface to Google Maps is undergoing (as of early
2020) some major changes and is quite volatile. You may need to register
as a ‘local guide’/contributor, but the general process is:
- using a browser, open Google Maps and search for the place (e.g.,
a village name or other feature) where you want to add your image.
Once found, then if it has photos there should be a ‘camera +’ icon;
click on that to add your image. If there are no photos shown there
should a an ‘Add photo’ button to click. It may take a day or so
for the ‘blue circle’ to appear on the map (and it may disappear
again or stop working later!).
- using the Street View app on a phone, click on the camera icon
then ‘import 360° photos’ then use the menu on the resulting page
(this also seems to be volatile as of this writing and may require
some experimentation). This seems to be more reliable than using
the web interface, at present.
You can view the starter image using Google Maps: Search for
“Bejes, Spain”, click on the ‘little yellow man’ and scroll right
to 225m due East of the car parking area at the southern entrance
to the village (and about 100m SSW of the church); you should see
a small blue circle. Clicking on the circle should display the panorama.
This upload of the starter image, saved as a sphere, was done using
the Google Street Map app from a mobile phone.
Twitter does not seem to be able to display 360° spherical panoramas.
Do let me know of any others that you have tested and that could
be added to this list.