Silverlight 2 includes a feature called Deep Zoom, which in essence is Microsoft's Seadragon technology converted for use across multiple browser and platforms. The technology was demonstrated as a Microsoft Live Labs project at TED last year. It powers Photosynth, a complicated piece of photo software from Microsoft Research that recently moved out of Live Labs and onto Virtual Earth. Seadragon aims to make browsing images, no matter how large or how many, a speedy, seamless, and smooth experience. Deep Zoom has been put to use by a few companies, like the Hard Rock Café Memorabilia webpage, and individuals, like the Deep Zoom Obama website.
The Deep Zoom Composer is a tool used for preparing content to use Silverlight's Deep Zoom feature. Microsoft released two updates to the tool, the latest of which can be downloaded via the Microsoft Download Center. Along with the usual bug, performance, and stability changes, two new features were added:
Panoramic Stitching: similar images can now be stitched together thanks to the integration of technology from Microsoft Research's Interactive Visual Group. A user can select photos that share similar characteristics, right click on them, and choose "Create panoramic photo." The time for the process to complete depends on the number of images, how large they are, and how much calculation is needed. After specifying the part of the stitched image that the user would like to save, it will appear in the design surface, just like any other image.PhotoZoom Upload: Deep Zoom Composer now integrates with the Live Labs PhotoZoom service; the user can choose Export, sign in with his or her Live ID, specify an album name, choose a cover image, and then upload the images. The newly created PhotoZoom album can then be shared with friends.
The second update to the Deep Zoom Composer was released due to problems with the PhotoZoom Upload feature: some uploads were timing out before completing (the time for this was significantly increased) and the log-in screen was not very well designed (an account with PhotoZoom needs to be created before using the upload feature). If you installed a new version of Deep Zoom Composer between August 1 and August 3, make sure to uninstall it and install the latest version (in Help => About the build date should be "3 August 2008").
Further readingExpression Blend and Design: Download the New Deep Zoom Composer Preview!Expression Blend and Design: Deep Zoom Composer Updated (Again!)