This time last year I blogged about the potential to ‘steal’ places in digital form. Now Microsoft is developing Microsoft Photosynth to enable this sort of thing. Of course, such tools could also be used for interior spaces such as galleries. And doubtless software companies like the makers of software such as iClone and 3DS Max will eventually be happy to provide a third-party plug-in for Photosynth v1.0, that will easily insert a 3D talking “tour guide” or “lecturer” alongside the 3D environment. There’s an interesting long-term potential here, for teachers and artists to easily get into creating 3D “roamable” environments with just a pocket digicam and a good microphone. And for tourist boards to cheaply create a “walk our streets before you visit” familiarisation package for potential visitors. It’s all part of the emerging geospatial web.