Let’s have a look at option 1 first – floorplans and Photosynth collections on Bing Maps: We can crunch images or PDF-documents into a tile-layer that we can overlay on Bing Maps using the MapCruncher in minutes.
It requires quite a few photos and can be a bit of an effort to create a nice 3-dimensional representation of a building or room in Photosynth but recently we launched a new version of the Image Composite Editor (ICE) which allows to create simple panoramas and publish them into Photosynth within minutes as well.
Stringing this all together in a nice Silverlight application and publishing it into the Windows Azure Platform is a piece of cake. You’ll find a sample here. Photosynth collections are available at level 2 and 3. In level 2 there is one 3-dimensional synth and on level 3 we have only panorama-synths.
Let’s have a look at option 2 now – integrating Bing Maps and Photosynth in Visio: Visio allows to save a drawing as a Web Page and a while back John Goldsmith published an interesting article on his visLog which describes how to integrate Bing Maps in Visio by adding additional properties to a Visio shape and additional widgets to the web page. I have picked up his example and created a floorplan of the Art gallery of New South Wales in Sydney. Ctrl+Click on the red dot to show the location on Bing Maps and the interior of the gallery in Photosynth. You will find the live sample here and the source code here.