Capturing “the moment” with Photosynth: Barack Obama takes the Oath of Office

On Tuesday, January 20th, Barack Obama will be sworn in as President of the United States in front of the US Capitol in Washington DC, and in front of an estimated 2-5 million witnesses.  To capture the moment, CNN News is planning to create a Photosynth of Obama’s swearing in, in what in itself will be a momentous use of Photosynth.


The Photosynth blog has details:

Capturing the Moment of Transition

We’re partnering with CNN to gather thousands of your photographs to create an immersive experience of the moment when President Obama takes the Oath of Office. From the vast sweep of the crowd to a close-up on the President’s hand on the Bible, every part of this historic scene will be frozen in time and presented in 3-D as only Photosynth can.

Well placed CNN photographers will capture lots of detailed shots for this synth, and if you’re there you can help make this an even more amazing experience by adding your perspective with your digital camera or camera phone.

Check out CNN’s page dedicated to this collaboration:

How it Will Work

We’ll take your photos from every angle, combine them with CNN’s professional shots, and produce what we hope will be an amazing experience that will be shown live on CNN. And you thought the Jessica Yellin hologram was cool! The synth will also be available for everyone to see on

How to Participate

When you make a Photosynth on your own, you shoot tens or hundreds of photos from different positions. Since we hope to have thousands of people participating, we’re asking to just capture the view from one position.

If you have a…

Camera Phone. Take one photo of the moment when the President Elect raises his hand to take the Oath, and email it as soon as you can to [email protected] Don’t worry if he’s too small to see clearly in your photo. As long as you get the Capitol building in your shot it will synth in and help reconstruct the environment.

Digital Camera. Take three photos (wide-angle, mid-zoom, full-zoom) of the President Elect while he is being sworn in. As soon as you can get to an Internet connection, email them to us at [email protected]. Make sure your email message is less than 10MB in size. Break it into a couple of messages if your three photos combine to more than 10MB.

We’d love to give you credit in the synth, so include your name in the email if you’d like it to appear in the list of contributors.

Don’t worry if you won’t be one of the possible million people in attendance… we’re working on some ways to showcase your inauguration synths from around the D.C. area… and the world. Stay tuned for more information on synthing your inauguration celebrations and events.

So even if you’re not in Washington on Tuesday, capture your inauguration moment and we’ll keep you posted on how you’ll be able to join in the festivities.