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Apocalypse
06-22-2011, 11:29 PM
A Start-Up’s Camera Lets You Take Shots First and Focus Later


With an innovative camera due out later this year from a company called Lytro, photographers will have one less excuse for having missed that perfect shot.

The company’s technology allows a picture’s focus to be adjusted after it is taken. While viewing a picture taken with a Lytro camera on a computer screen, you can, for example, click to bring people in the foreground into sharp relief, or switch the focus to the mountains behind them.

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The Lytro camera captures far more light data, from many angles, than is possible with a conventional camera. It accomplishes that with a special sensor called a microlens array, which puts the equivalent of many lenses into a small space. “That is the heart of the breakthrough,” said Pat Hanrahan, a Stanford professor, who was Mr. Ng’s thesis adviser but is not involved in Lytro.



But the wealth of raw light data comes to life only with sophisticated software that lets a viewer switch points of focus. This allows still photographs to be explored as never before. “They become interactive, living pictures,” Mr. Ng said. He thinks a popular use may be families and friends roaming through different perspectives on pictures of, say, vacations and parties posted on Facebook (Lytro will have a Facebook app).



For a photographer, whether amateur or professional, the Lytro technology means that the headaches of focusing a shot go away. Richard Koci Hernandez, a photojournalist, said that when he tried out a prototype earlier this year, he immediately recognized the potential impact.

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/06/22/technology/22camera.html?src=me&ref=general#

If the price is right, I know what I'm getting.

fettpett
06-22-2011, 11:40 PM
that is pretty cool