Smart Imaging Technologies brings Web 2.0 technology to microscopy with Simagis Live cloud software
Posted: October 7, 2011 — We live in the midst of a Web 2.0 and cloud computing revolution. Today you can store documents, images and music on the cloud and access them from any web browser; you can share data instantly and collaborate in real time. Using web applications, businesses of all sizes can access the same software products that once were only available to big companies with IT departments and data-centers. From banking and accounting to word processing and number crunching – you can get a lot done online.
If we can do so many things online, why not image analysis? With the proliferation of high-speed internet and digital imaging, may be it is time to bring Web 2.0 technology to microscopy?
One aspiring technology startup thinks so. Smart Imaging Technologies, a VC-backed technology venture from Texas, pledges to bring Web 2.0 technology to microscopy with Simagis Live cloud software. “We want to bring power and convenience of web applications to microscopy and microanalysis, and make web technology available to millions of microscope users around the globe. If you have digital camera and Internet- you are ready for Web Microscopy,” says the company founder.
With Web Microscopy, a small software utility on your desktop will automatically upload your digital images to a cloud server so you can work with them online via a web interface. If you have an automated microscope stage, you can stream individual image tiles to the server for stitching and creating mosaic images or virtual slides, to view your entire specimen at full resolution online.
What can you do with this technology? As it turns out, quite a lot: Collaboration, Communication and Mobility. Once your digital images or virtual slides are uploaded, they can be viewed, annotated and measured by any number of people at the same time from any computer or web tablet. You can upload composite images with several fluorescence channels and view them online with overlays. Web viewers utilize zoom technology similar to Google Maps and allow panning and zooming on virtual slides of unlimited size. Sharing annotated images becomes easy – just create a private shared link with a few clicks and share your image or entire virtual slide with anybody by email or IM. You may invite others to your workspace to build a collaboration network, subscribe to new annotations or comments via RSS, and get email notifications in your mailbox.
Web Applications and Cloud Computing
Web software applications are hot with users. They are convenient, affordable, maintenance-free, universally accessible and collaborative by nature. Google Maps and Facebook, Gmail and Travelocity are just a few examples of the web applications that people use every day. More and more engaging apps are coming out daily, solving all kinds of user problems.
Web microscopy makes it possible using web applications for microanalysis. Server applications are not limited by the power of desktop computers; scalable computing clouds allow processing and analysis of single images or entire digital slides without any software to download, install and maintain – all you need is your web browser. Cloud technology makes the development and distribution of image analysis applications fast and efficient. Once any new application is available, all users can use it immediately at the same time. This convenience is attractive not just for users but also for developers who can create and distribute image analysis applications quickly and cheaply to all users on the network at the same time.
Free and Pay-per-use Service
No Web 2.0 technology would be complete without free applications and an economical pricing model, and Web Microscopy is no exception. With Simagis Live, users can get up to 2GB of free space on application servers and run several free image analysis applications including particle, grain and phase analysis. Those who need more can upgrade to a commercial account and get unlimited storage as well as access to dozens of commercial image analysis applications customized specifically for their images by the company support engineers.
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