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June 21, 2011 2:19 AM   Subscribe

An immersive 360° camera video of the Vancouver riots. (Bandwidth intensive video.)

There seems to be a few different ways of doing this. I'd be grateful if a photographer or someone who else who's familiar with this technology could elaborate. Via.
posted by converge (33 comments total) 10 users marked this as a favorite

 
Gave me a headache.
posted by bwg at 2:32 AM on June 21, 2011


Pretty cool camerawork. The riot, on the other hand...


How many Vancouver rioters does it take to smash a lightbulb with a hockey stick?



47. One to smash it and 44 to take pictures with their phones, and two to yell WHOOOOOO!
posted by louche mustachio at 2:37 AM on June 21, 2011 [2 favorites]


Really cool video, but lame, lame, lame riot. Just some fires and a bunch of people milling about. I kept waiting for the fight - any fight - to break out. Nothing. Not even a hard hit or a high stick. It was as boring as watching a European hockey match.
posted by three blind mice at 2:44 AM on June 21, 2011


watching that was a very strange experience. Where is the omnipresent riot act recording coming from towards the end?
posted by Pre-Taped Call In Show at 2:47 AM on June 21, 2011 [1 favorite]


I could imagine that if you pointed a lens at a convex mirror, then used some kind of image distortion software to map it to the desired focal length of the video player application, that would probably do it.

That's how I reckon you could achieve it. I'll now go and find out if that's how it's done.
posted by a non e mouse at 4:07 AM on June 21, 2011


a non e mouse: Here's someone doing exactly that.
posted by pmcp at 4:50 AM on June 21, 2011


North Studio 360's sphericam.
posted by rmmcclay at 5:19 AM on June 21, 2011 [4 favorites]


There's some groovy ideas that you could put into that, pmcp - the mirror ball that guy's talking could be pretty wild.
posted by a non e mouse at 5:20 AM on June 21, 2011


Yeah, rmmcclay is right, at about the 2 min. mark in the video there's a bystander commenting on the camera and somebody says there are 5 cameras. From there you'd stitch each frame together much like you could for a still panorama. I'm not sure what program they're using for the stitching.

Honestly, though, the video has a very limited use as it is not pleasant to pan around (better if you use the arrow keys instead of a mouse). This is a problem with a lot of 360 photography. The resulting product makes you motion sick because as you pan the edges are very warped. I've seen the still work improve to remove the distortion and not make you ill, but there's still quite a lot of it in this particular video.
posted by Muddler at 5:32 AM on June 21, 2011


Needs more Riot Coupling.
posted by chavenet at 5:42 AM on June 21, 2011


And this was all because they lost a fucking HOCKEY GAME? You have got to be FUCKING KIDDING ME.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 5:55 AM on June 21, 2011 [1 favorite]


And this was all because they lost a fucking HOCKEY GAME?

It was because they were morons and because:

10 people love breaking things
20 people love filming people breaking things
30 people love being filmed
40 GOTO 10
posted by Pre-Taped Call In Show at 6:58 AM on June 21, 2011 [1 favorite]


Too late for last week's riot threads, here's a nice piece by John Valliant on what happened after the game.
And, couldn't watch the 360; way too disorienting.
posted by Phlegmco(tm) at 7:28 AM on June 21, 2011


I live in Chicago, but was in Vancouver for Games 6 and 7. Game 6 was fun, they set up the same areas downtown for people to watch the games and everything was fine. After the game, everyone just left, no problems.

For Game 7, it was the mostly same through the end of the 2nd period, but people were already acting a bit more ridiculous. One rather drunk fellow was walking up and down the line of portable toilets (on top of them) yelling at the crowd. I'm not sure if he was trying to pump them up or what, but people started throwing water bottles and whatnot at him, and eventually rocked the toilets until he fell. We also saw one fight break out, but the cops were right there and stopped it almost immediately.

Walking down Granville during the 3rd was fine for the most part, but people were already starting to throw trash out of windows, yell at each other, etc. You could feel a bit of tension in the air as the game came to an end.

In the end, it wasn't about hockey - it was about people drinking all day long and a small number wanting to riot and loot after the game, win or lose. Anyone that we talked to said it was embarrassing for the city and they couldn't believe it was happening. While it was a relatively small number of people that were actively breaking the law (maybe several hundred out of the estimated 100,000 people that came downtown), there was a huge number of people that stood around and watched, filmed, etc. As Pre-Taped said, it was a cycle that fed itself, and was really disappointing to see.

We definitely had a great trip and we were smart enough to get back to our hotel by the end of the game, so we were totally safe the entire time (despite wearing Blackhawks gear). I'm torn because I know it was only a small number of people that really do not represent the entire city and everything up to that point was great, but I really can't say that I feel like going back.
posted by hankscorpio83 at 7:37 AM on June 21, 2011 [1 favorite]


"There seems to be a few different ways of doing this."

Well, one of the most common techniques is to start by tipping over a cop car and setting it on fire.
posted by clvrmnky at 7:43 AM on June 21, 2011 [1 favorite]


Phlegmco posted while I was writing, just read it.

While I agree that there is a distinct difference between a full-blown riot and what happened in Vancouver, I think that Valliant is trivializing it a bit too much.

I was at Woodstock 1999, which ended with fires, looting of vendors, etc. as well. Was it bad? Absolutely. Was it as bad as Kurt Loder made it seem to be in the piece he wrote for Rolling Stone? No. He made it seem like a warzone that he barely escaped from alive.

In both cases, it was a handful of idiots breaking shit and starting fires because that's what they wanted to do. But Valliant saying that it says nothing about Vancouver is a bit of a stretch...
posted by hankscorpio83 at 7:45 AM on June 21, 2011


But Valliant saying that it says nothing about Vancouver is a bit of a stretch...

Yeah, all it really says is that there's a bunch of violent idiots here, and a bunch of gawkers. And I have to agree that it's not the only City where this is true.

The aftermath, however... Loads of people are still, 5 days after the fact, making "pilgrimages" to the Bay on Granville to take pictures of the signatures on the boarded up windows, and some are calling for the signed boards to be put on permanent display somewhere for posterity. It's what they've been seeing on the news for the last 6 days, I guess, but fetishising property damage at a retail store is pretty silly. Other people are publicly shaming high school kids (anonymously) and making death threats against them and their families.

Classy!
posted by Hoopo at 8:25 AM on June 21, 2011


The video itself is more remarkable than the riot contained therein.
posted by blue_beetle at 8:36 AM on June 21, 2011 [1 favorite]


Is this where we queue to destroy Western civilization?
posted by dhartung at 9:19 AM on June 21, 2011


47. One to smash it and 44 to take pictures with their phones, and two to yell WHOOOOOO!

44 + 1 = 45
posted by philip-random at 9:44 AM on June 21, 2011


And this was all because they lost a fucking HOCKEY GAME? You have got to be FUCKING KIDDING ME.

In case you haven't seen it already, this clip speaks rather eloquently to the whole sordid/stupid situation:

LOSER

posted by philip-random at 9:48 AM on June 21, 2011 [1 favorite]


Anyone that we talked to said ... they couldn't believe it was happening.

Everyone I know was making nervous jokes beforehand. We all saw it was coming.

this was all because they lost a fucking HOCKEY GAME?

You should see what happens when we lose at curling. Flee the city. Hurry hard.
posted by justsomebodythatyouusedtoknow at 10:12 AM on June 21, 2011


I thought the cop reading the riot act sounded terribly polite. "All you rioters, would you please stop rioting and go home. Your rioting is against the law. Thank you so much."
posted by binturong at 11:08 AM on June 21, 2011


When the camera started moving in response to the first order to disperse, I looked behind to see a mother clutching at her son as they raced: where? Its kind of a grim situation to be caught in as a non-combatant. I had flashes of being on the wrong side of a local police conrol zone being read the riot act ("you are ordered to disperse") whilst being trapped on all sides by police. Here there's the suggestion that the lawful are free to go, but goddamn, if you're in the middle of it looking to get out, those exits are hard to find. I got panicky watching those two run amongst a small mass of other worried persons running in the face of LRAD threats, fearing that it'd pick up momentum and become a crush. Enough defiant citizens to apparently negate that...
posted by Ogre Lawless at 11:40 AM on June 21, 2011


Here there's the suggestion that the lawful are free to go, but goddamn, if you're in the middle of it looking to get out, those exits are hard to find.

This is why I'm happy that the police didn't immediately start bashing people and firing off tear gas. There were 100,000 people there, including parents with their children and others who had nothing to do with it. I'm glad they didn't get overzealous like in Toronto last summer, and for once I applaud how the police responded to an out-of-control crowd. In the end there was some unfortunate property damage, but very few injuries. That's a success in my mind.
posted by Hoopo at 11:54 AM on June 21, 2011 [2 favorites]


This is why I'm happy that the police didn't immediately start bashing people and firing off tear gas.

That's because the rioters here were only causing property damage and threatening public safety. They weren't, for example, speaking out against the international capitalist-militarist complex or anything really dangerous like that.
posted by OverlappingElvis at 12:03 PM on June 21, 2011 [1 favorite]


Regarding Hoppo's comment about the boarded up windows, I hadn't seen them until now. This seems more like the "real" Vancouver than what happened after the game.
posted by hankscorpio83 at 12:46 PM on June 21, 2011


44+1=45+ two to yell WOOOOOOO=47
posted by louche mustachio at 1:18 PM on June 21, 2011


Regarding Hoppo's comment about the boarded up windows, I hadn't seen them until now. This seems more like the "real" Vancouver than what happened after the game.

It's all Vancouver -- good-bad-ugly. I moved here when I was ten, which makes almost 42 years now I've called it home. But one thing I never quite "got" about my hometown until I'd been away from it for a chunk of time, traveling in Europe, is just how close to the edge of civilization we are. Yeah, we've got nice big glass buildings and shiny happy small "l" liberal people of all races-creeds-sexual-preferences-yadda-yadda-yadda ... but as little a fifty years ago, this was still just a rowdy frontier town full of various loggers-miners-fishermen who would work damned hard then come to town to party, drink, smash shit up.

And you don't have to go far from town at all to find this sort of hot-blood still flowing. Just head up to mid-Vancouver Island sometime (Nanaimo and points north) where pretty much every summer, there's all kinds of minor "youth-riots" going down at various raves, dances, beach parties. Sometime it even makes the papers.

I remember a few years ago talking to one of the local cops on Hornby Island about an incident that had happened there (a house deliberately burned down in the wake of a beach party that went bad). He quoted something a criminologist had said about the kids of of former fishermen and forestry workers being a particularly hard crowd to deal with, as there was a lot of alcoholism in their families, not to mention a lot of deeply instilled resentment toward all the changes their communities were being forced to endure as their economies became more and more tourist and retirement based.

So yeah, like all so-called world class cities, Vancouver may like to think that it exists in a pretty bubble of enlightenment and modernity, somehow separate from the extremes of its past. But that would be wrong. We've got a sort uncontained rowdiness in our soul ... which is not entirely a bad thing. Hell we've likely got some of the least neurotic people in the western world living hereabouts ... but we can also go dumb and primal awfully quick, particularly when whipped into frenzy of rah-rah-rah-hometeam-triumphalism and then all jammed together in the middle of town, with no elbow room, too much booze, and nothing to do.

and oh yeah, there's all those anarchists about, too
posted by philip-random at 1:45 PM on June 21, 2011 [4 favorites]


I tried dragging chairs the mob was throwing through the windows of the Blenz at Richards and Georgia away from the windows but it backfired as then the fucktards got a running start and chucked the chairs at a higher velocity. Awesome. Go Surrey. I was told on Saturday that the woman who owned the Blenz was actually inside when it was being trashed.

I also saw a note on one of the boards on the Bay saying that the Bay employees were hiding in a staff room thinking the building was on fire. Easy to understand why; the parkade across the street had burning cars in it and the fire alarm was ringing. I tried screaming at people to stop the fuckery there too but gave up when I was nearly clocked with a metal pole thrown at a window.

There is a life-sized sculpture of a bull at the corner near the Blenz; on Saturday he was wearing a flag. I am Team Bull.
posted by moneyjane at 4:51 PM on June 21, 2011 [1 favorite]


I know the guy that made the video, having just met him at a convention of people who do this sort of photography. He's really on the bleeding edge of panoramic photography, with 360-degree video. Right now, this is in the earliest stages of figuring how to do it. As we get through that stage, we get to figure out exactly how, where and when to best use it. Also, just as important, how to present the results. I told him about the discussion, and asked him to stop by, but I guess he didn't make it. He's probably busy after being away for the convention, which was in Portugal.

Myself, I do 360-degrees in still-images, only. I realize some people don't like the panning and zooming way of looking at an image. It takes some getting used to, and the interface is all-important. Sometimes, it ends up seeming little more than a novelty. Other times, you get the sense of the whole that you miss from ordinary photographs.

This video was shot with a Ladybug system.. You get the view all-round at the same instant, consistently. The trade-off is the number of pixels total. The still shots I take involve 32 individual photos for each 360-degree view. These require more precision and careful work to put together than lower resolution panoramas which take as few as 4 shots, using a fisheye lens. The benefit is the amount of detail in the final image. With the fisheye lenses, the benefit is speed and ease in the stitching process. The speed part is huge, when you want to capture a scene before things move. With the high-resolution method, a change in the sunlight can muck up the entire thing, from nothing more than a cloud moving. With video, the photos need to be shot simultaneously.
posted by Goofyy at 11:17 PM on June 21, 2011 [1 favorite]


I should have added this: Nimmo Bay Experience., also by NorthStudio360. Here you see an application of 360-degree video that is pretty much a perfect fit. The photographer, Ryan Whitehead, discussed the work at the conference.
posted by Goofyy at 11:30 PM on June 21, 2011 [1 favorite]


Thanks for that.
posted by converge at 12:35 AM on June 22, 2011


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