Creating beauty with Free Software

Panorama of rhine near DrachenfelsSince I tried it for the first time, I simply fell in love with creating panorama pictures.
Gloriously, this is possible with the Free Software Hugin.
The new (2011-09-30) version 2011.02 features a greatly improved interface making work really easy.
Here is the result of stitching together 4 pics taken by mobile phone (Sony Ericsson Cybershot C905):

Norwegian Constitution Day, Free Software panoramas and software patents

Today is Norwegian Constitution Day.

In 2007, I spent my honeymoon in Norway. That was a fantastic journey!

As a reminiscence, I wanted to finally create some panoramas I photographed then. Thanks to Hugin this really is fun:

Tromsø panoramic view

Tromsø panoramic view, taken with 11 separate shots from the plateau before the arctic cathedral on 2007-05-18

There is one downer, though:

You need to connect the pictures somehow. You can either do this manually (tedious) or you can use autopano-sift-c. This gives you an ugly warning, though:

The use of this software is restricted by certain conditions.
See the "LICENSE" file distributed with the program for details.

The University of British Columbia has applied for a patent on the SIFT
algorithm in the United States.  Commercial applications of this software may
require a license from the University of British Columbia.

Another story how software patents harm innovation!