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Microsoft takes shake out of videos with hyper-lapse

Researchers are working on a tool that converts tedious, dull, and shaky footage into smooth, seamless, time-lapse videos -- it's said to be a Windows app soon.

Microsoft's upcoming tool could smooth out raw footage from this sky diver. GoPro

While watching friends' adventurous GoPro time-lapse videos of mountain biking, skateboarding, or kayaking can be fun -- sometimes that shaky footage can bring on nausea.

Microsoft Research is looking to tamp down that sick-effect with a new tool that turns rough time-lapse footage into smooth videos. The company announced Monday that it's created an algorithm that stiches and blends together video frames to take the shake out of videos.

"At high speed-up rates, simple frame sub-sampling coupled with existing video stabilization methods does not work, because the erratic camera shake present in first-person videos is amplified by the speed-up," Microsoft researchers, Johannes Kopf, Michael Cohen, and Richard Szeliski, wrote in a blog post.

Turning raw footage into time-lapse videos is important because it speeds up what would otherwise be hours of tedious and dull footage. As the researchers note, "There's nothing wrong with these except they're hours long and dead boring to watch."

But converting that raw footage into time-lapse videos creates the shaky conundrum. So, by using Microsoft's tool and taking time-lapse to the next level, to what the researchers call "hyper-lapse," could make the videos much more watchable.

While the project is still in beta, the researchers said that they are working on making it available as a Windows app soon.

(Via TechCrunch).