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New Feature: Topo Photos


Original Post
Nick Wilder · · Boulder, CO · Joined Jan 2005 · Points: 3,879

We're excited to announce a new feature we're calling "Topo Photos". You can now draw route lines, bolts, belay spots, etc on any photo in Mountain Project, directly on the web site.

Here's an example of a photo I created using the new tool:
mountainproject.com/v/10848…

Note on the right side, below the title, you can show/hide the Topo Data.

You can do this for ANY photo you've uploaded to the site, old or new. And you can edit this data over and over in the future as routes are added or change. (For your own photos: look for the "Edit Topo Data" in the edit menu.)

For those of you with no photos (or not logged in), click here for another example. You can play around with the editing tool but you won't be able to save it.
mountainproject.com/scripts…

A huge thanks to Mountain Project user Alma Madsen who created the code that makes this work!

Topo for Super Roof and Let's Get Horizontal

J. Albers · · Colorado · Joined Jul 2008 · Points: 1,791

Wow, really cool news. Thanks a lot Alma, that is a really helpful feature. Cheers.

Jason Halladay · · Los Alamos, NM · Joined Oct 2005 · Points: 12,519

Fantastic work Nick and Alma! Just used it on a photo of mine and found it incredibly easy to figure out and use. The "Show Topo Overlay" toggle box is a really nice feature too.

Side Canyon action. Climber in yellow is on "Romeo" and the climber in red is on "Juliet".

mtoensing · · Boulder · Joined Feb 2006 · Points: 705

Just tried it on one of my photos. Really cool! I'm sure this will help on many photos.

Lee Jenkins · · Tucson, Arizona · Joined Dec 2005 · Points: 1,060

Awesome! Just what I've been waiting for.

J _ · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jan 2010 · Points: 825

Is there any way to zoom in on a photo to make accurate bolt (X) placements? I also checked out the topo that Jason Halladay did and when I clicked on the photo to make it larger the topo lines disappeared. This is a great addition to MP and hopefully it continues to improve with a feedback and working out any bugs. Thanks Nick and Alma!!

Ryan Nevius · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Dec 2010 · Points: 898

I usually do my topos in Illustrator, but this is really great. I hope this motivates more people to contribute to this site. Thanks to everyone who made this possible!

Edit: Original post noted that I use InDesign for topos...NOPE!

Morgan Patterson · · CT · Joined Oct 2009 · Points: 8,824
Ryan Nevius wrote:I usually do my topos in Indesign, but this is really great. I hope this motivates more people to contribute to this site. Thanks to everyone who made this possible!
I've heard of others using illustrator (esp for boulder field maps)... have you used both? or is indesign just a refined slimmed down illustrator.
Wayne DENSMORE · · Superior, CO · Joined Jul 2007 · Points: 5
J.T.R. wrote:Is there any way to zoom in on a photo to make accurate bolt (X) placements? I also checked out the topo that Jason Halladay did and when I clicked on the photo to make it larger the topo lines disappeared. This is a great addition to MP and hopefully it continues to improve with a feedback and working out any bugs. Thanks Nick and Alma!!
2nd this. cool feature!

Zooming in on the photo losing the topo info is a problem though. I haven't tried printing the photo in a mini-guide yet, hoping that works though!
zeGoat Banach · · Springdale, UT · Joined Oct 2008 · Points: 0

Looks amazing!!!! Well done indeed. It would be further amazing if this editor could be loaded on the app. The ability to take photo and add route beta seemlesy would be a game changer. Cheers

Nick Wilder · · Boulder, CO · Joined Jan 2005 · Points: 3,879

Just updated (with help from Alma) so that you now edit the high-res version of the image. Two advantages:

- when editing, you can zoom in and out (CTRL+/-) to find the bolts and get it right.
- when viewing, you can blow up the full size image and the topo data will be there.

Bad news: the 23 Topo Photos that got created since this went live have to be re-done for the high-res to work. I'm working on them...

J _ · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jan 2010 · Points: 825

Thanks for the update and your hard work!

Ryan Nevius · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Dec 2010 · Points: 898
Morgan Patterson wrote: I've heard of others using illustrator (esp for boulder field maps)... have you used both? or is indesign just a refined slimmed down illustrator.
I actually mis-typed last time...I meant to write "Illustrator" for topo creation.

I use Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign. My workflow is usually: edit original photo in Photoshop (levels, crop, etc), import into Illustrator, draw topo in Illustrator.

Photoshop is best for photo manipulation. Illustrator is best for creating shaped visual elements such as topos; it is vector based (vectors can be easily manipulated, altered and resized without a loss in quality). InDesign is best for creating layouts or print-ready files (e.g. a guidebook). While InDesign also includes some of the features that are included in Illustrator, creating high quality vector graphics is not its main focus.

I hope this makes sense. In a nutshell: Photoshop for image editing, Illustrator for vector graphic creation, InDesign for layouts.
SteveF · · Fort Collins, CO · Joined Aug 2007 · Points: 31

This is a fantastic feature that will hopefully lead to many better topo photos. I think it could possibly be improved by providing a standardization for different types and grades of routes.

For example, a particular line style used just for trad or sport routes, and a particular color depending on the grade. Many guidebooks now implement something like this, and it makes the photos more easily interpreted at a quick glance. Big X's for bolts should make sport routes pretty distinguishable but I can forsee many people not wanting to put forth the additional effort to put in X's initially.

I'm looking forward to using this tool and actually beginning to contribute to this site. Now MP just needs a better mapping feature with trails so people can more easily navigate to crags. I'm envisioning something like opencycle map overlayed with climbing routes and rock features.

Guideline #1: Don't be a jerk.

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