Ghostly “timescanned” images of New York’s streets

This is lovely: A “timescanned video” project by some students at NYU’s Interactive Telecommunications Program. Basically, they took panoramic video shots of various street scenes in New York, and then smooshed them into these wonky, crazy, stretched-out still images. As they describe it on their site:

We wanted to experiment with capturing only one small slit of the camera’s image and adding it to the end of an image compiled in real-time using Processing. This allowed us to create extremely long panoramic images composed of thousands of small “slits” of time.

Truthfully, their description is so vague I can’t figure out exactly what sort of algorithmic hoodoo they used, but it doesn’t matter; they’re still fun to look at. Sort of ghostly, actually: The time distortion renders the background mostly normal — if someone wavy — while the people turn into odd, Flatland-like two-dimensional citizens.

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I'm Clive Thompson, the author of Smarter Than You Think: How Technology is Changing Our Minds for the Better (Penguin Press). You can order the book now at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Powells, Indiebound, or through your local bookstore! I'm also a contributing writer for the New York Times Magazine and a columnist for Wired magazine. Email is here or ping me via the antiquated form of AOL IM (pomeranian99).

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