TechCrunch's Lucas Matney details his first-person experience with the Matterport team as they mapped his San Francisco apartment into a virtual-reality experience. And it turns out, it was easier than expected.

Matterport recently revealed that it has had more than 70 million total visits to the nearly 300,000 spaces it has captured in virtual reality. But to reach that kind of critical mass, Matterport knew it had to focus on ease of use with its Pro Camera for property owners and managers.

To build up all this content, it wasn’t really feasible to suggest that real estate agents take a class or watch an hour-long YouTube tutorial on how to use the equipment. It’s been essential that agents can just take the camera out of the box and start scanning spaces without much of a learning curve.

What really makes Matterport’s tech impressive is the ability of the camera to recognize its own location within a space given the visual context of earlier photographs. If it sees the other side of a chair that was captured in an earlier sweep, the camera will be able to intelligently locate itself and add its perspective to the greater model. This also means that you have to be careful not to bump into too many things when you’re moving the camera around on its tripod [so] as not to screw things up.

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