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Deep Zoom, Annotations, Compare and Overlay
Jana, why put all image tools in one page? We have separate components for these!


Basic features

  • Deem Zoom using tiling
  • Vector drawing and annotation
  • Overlay
  • Show side by side
  • Move, rotate shapes


DeepZoom Protocols

  • we have to research a DeepZoom server protocol (eg to adapt between two servers in DAM federation).
  • DeepZoom formats/protocols include Microsoft DeepZoom (DZI/DZC file extensions), IIP Protocol, OpenZoom description format, TMS tileset, Zoomify tileset , Google Maps tileset, Pyramid TIFF (PTIF) etc.
  • supports the native IIP Protocol, Zoomify and MS DeepZoom
  • We researched some DeepZoom servers), but have not researched them comprehensively yet
  • There is still no evidence that the DeepZoom server will need to be "tightly coupled" with the ResearchSpace architecture. Its I/O interface is relatively simple (input: image DAM URL and initial tile; output: show tiles, return finally selected tile or click). If it's "loosely coupled" then it doesn't necessarily have to be in Java.

DeepZoom servers/demos

  • An excellent site on this topic is
    • It provides a lot of information, as well as open source DeepZoom libraries for Flash
  • An impressive approach called Inline Multiscale Image Replacement offers smooth zooming with the mouse wheel and panning by dragging the mouse, while keeping the image in its original context. Please look at the demo and "let’s get your mouse wheel spinnin’" over the image

  • The IIP demos are also very impressive and support mouse zoom, mouse panning, show the zoomed part in context… The IIP server is written in C++, which is an important performance consideration for this particular type of task. IIP includes clients in Flash , JavaScript , Java (for applets), and supports Zoomify and DeepZoom viewers

  • some of the best DeepZoom technology may be in Microsoft's Silverlight (coming from Seadragon and Photosynth acquisitions)
    See this dazzling TED movie "that could transform the way we look at digital images"
    • ZoomIt service by Microsoft


Which is the optimal choice is a matter of weighting numerous considerations:

  • What operating systems, browsers and browser versions must be supported by ResearchSpace.
  • What browser plugins can be used
    • E.g. Silverlight is supported in most browsers, but not on Linux (Windows and MacOS are supported). There is a Linux port called Moonlight, but it has uncertain quality and future
  • Functions for image annotation, or ease of integrating such functions
  • Other desired functionalities (e.g. is it desirable to play with a collage of images?)
  • Performance characteristics
  • Ease of integration and use
  • Requirements for loose or tight coupling to other system components

We'll select the best choice together with BM


Should work in a browser (TODO: what browsers, what versions). Plugins may be used. Should be user-friendly, feature-rich and with good performance.


  • + Allows for very enhanced GUI and features (rich client)
  • + See for IIPZoom. Source is available. (TODO: Check license)
  • - Requires a plugin
  • - We don't really have expertise in Flash
  • See - not open source


Java Applet


  • + No plugin
  • + We do have average expertise (not wizards, but we have decent knowledge and experience)
  • + Lots of source code/libraries available that does similar things
  • - Puts some load on client machine
  • - Limited capabilities for rich GUI
  • - Depends somewhat on browser and version
  • IIPMooViewer - close to what we need and already used in scientific projects. Zoom, overlay (only pictures of the same size), annotations (in beta). Version 2 beta is based on HTML 5 and Ajax. Suports also client side rotation. See IIPMooViewer demo.
  • SeaDragon Ajax - lightweight, does not depend on other libs. Clear code, good documentation, lots of examples; No annotations, no overlay, uses custom format (DZI) that shares with Silverlight (TODO: not 100% sure about that)


Not an independent technology but noted here as it adds some considerations.

  • Latest versions of most popular browsers support it.
  • Great enhancements related to graphics - native support and hw acceleration used
  • New DOM/API elements - like canvas
  • Ideally we would base our implementation on an open-source project or library already based on HTML 5
  • Great demo: svg-edit

Task List

  1. handler

    Maria: copy deep zoom tools from BaFO to here

    Oct 31, 2011
  2. handler

    Maria: move tools info from Place on Painting to Image Annotation Tools]

    Oct 31, 2011
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