Cut through the techno-babble

Welcome to the glossary page where you will find explanations of terms, phrases and technical jargon used on this site.

Some of the phrases we use may have a different meanings depending on who you talk to. The definitions you find here are based on our technical expertise in this field and through our contribution and communication with the pano/virtual tour/photography community.

We will maintain and update the glossary regularly as we get feedback from users or when new technical terms are required to describe further innovations we offer as an organisation (which will be often if recent history is anything to go by.)

GigapixelBack to top


The word gigapixel an image bitmap composed of 1 billion pixels, yes that's 1,000,000,000 pixels. Modern (2010) digital cameras are capable of capturing between about 10 and 20 megapixel images, some digital SLR cameras can exceed this and digital medium format cameras can capture images in excess of 50 megapixels.

A gigapixel image is the equivalent of 1,000 megapixel! So the amount of detail captured is staggering and has many applications, one of which is for panoramas and virtual tours which allow the viewer to be fully immersed in a high resolution environment where they can look around and zoom to levels of detail that are astonishing.

Each gigapixel image is made up of almost 200 individual photos which are shot using purpose built tripod heads that are calibrated to a high level of precision. We have a number of gigapixel panoramas on our portfolio pages, look out for the Giga logo above.

High ResolutionBack to top

High resoultion is a commonly used term but in relation to Tangent360 it refers to all of our work.

Our lowest resolution panoramas are high resolution in relation to the rest of the industry. Many companies who create virtual tours will provide their work rendered at a resolution that cannot be considered high, far from it in some cases. At Tangent360 we set the bar higher. We take the time to photograph your product or environment with care and precision to capture the maximum amount of detail appropriate to the job.

We have worked hard to refine our technique so that we can oversome some of the challenges that high resolution work entails. We feel that it is worth the extra effort and when you see the quality of our work we are sure you will agree.

HotspotBack to top


A hostspot is a clickable area inside a virtual tour that triggers an action.

One of the most common uses for a hotspot is to move from one pano to another within the tour but they can also be used to trigger other interactive features too.

The design of the hotspots we use within our work can differ from client to client and from project to project. However we always make them clear and easy to locate, simple yet descriptive. This ensures that viewers of your tour can enjoy simple to use navigation that does not detract from the ambience of the environment.

Interactive FeatureBack to top

Interative features are areas within a panorama or virtual tour that provides further engaging content for the user.

Often triggered by a hotspot interactive features can be flyout or popup screens that can provide detailed information about a product or service, furniture or objects that come to life when clicked or environment switchers such as day/night views.

Pano/PanoramaBack to top


A panorama, often abbreviated to "pano", refers to a single 360° by 180° view of a location. It can also refer to a panoramic photograph which can be printed and wall mounted.

Panos are created by stitching many photographs together to make a single, much larger image. As little as two or as many as two hundred images can be stitched into a pano and the more images that are used results in a more highly detailed pano. High resolution or gigapixel panos allow the user to explore more and focus on key areas of detail.

Pixel PerfectionistsBack to top

Pixel perfectionists

As developers and designers the team at Tangent 360 have been dubbed "Pixel Perfectionists" over the years.

This came about because of our obsessive determination to provide the utmost attention to detail. We hate it when web page elements don't line up or when there are sticthing errors in our panos, the absolute worst (nightmare inducing) is seeing the reflections of our tripod or other equipment in our panos.

This obsession has resulted in a meticulous workflow with many levels of checking and approvals before we put any of our work live.

It takes longer but it is worth it; our reputation, and nickname, depends on it!

Virtual TourBack to top

Virtual Tour

A virtual tour is a group of panoramas link together by hotspots to form a simulation of an existing location.

Virtual tours have many applications from retail showrooms to cathedrals and public buildings, homes for sale to office space, they provide the user with a unique perspective on the location and the unique ability to explore.

A good virtual tour will immerse the user in the environment leaving them with a sense of having visited the location.

Read more about the Tangent 360 virtual tour service on our services page or check out some of our previous work in our portfolio.

Glossary Listing

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