On the main page of the Seadragon website they say it all, “The aim of Seadragon is nothing less than to change the way we use screens, from wall-sized displays all the way down to cell phones…” From what I have seen, they may very well succeed. I was introduced to Seadragon through, of all things, an iPhone app. It was the last place I thought I would find a Microsoft technology demonstrator.
So what is Seadragon? It is a new method for viewing and navigating complex sets of data. Imagine if you could take all of the digital photos you have ever taken, lay them out on a grid and easily zoom in and out. Although this is a relatively boring example, you could easily expand the example to include all of the computer documents you have ever created and now you have something really powerful. If it is used as a computer’s file browser, it would be much easier to find certain types of files using Seadragon instead of using the good old “find file” command. This technology really shines when you load in a super hi res map.
Ready to have some fun? Let’s do a demo.
Use the scroll wheel on the mouse to zoom in and out of the image below.
Click and drag the screen to navigate around the screen. You will quickly get the feel for it.
Don’t forget to download the iTouch/iPhone Seadragon app. Have fun!