Posts Tagged ‘technology’

Fujifilm’s Moiré-Killing X-Trans Sensor is a Throwback to the Days of Film

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Fujifilm’s new X-Trans sensors diverge from the traditional way CMOS sensors are designed by using an irregular pattern of red, green, and blue pixels. This allows the sensors to eschew the standard anti-aliasing filter, eliminating moiré patterns without putting an extra component in front of the sensor. Roy Furchgott over at The New York Times has an interesting piece on how the new tech is inspired by Fujifilm’s glory days in the film photography industry:

Old fashioned analog photographs didn’t get a moire pattern because the crystals in film and photo paper aren’t even in size and placement. That randomness breaks up the moire effect.

So Fuji built a new sensor employing what it knew from the film business. Instead of using the Bayer array, it created a pattern called the X-Trans sensor which lays out the red green and blue photo sensors in a way that simulates the randomness of analog film.

Furchgott does a good job of explaining the new sensor design (and its benefits) in an easy-to-understand way.

Old Technology Modernizes a Camera Sensor [NYTimes]

Rumor: Sony May Introduce Eye-Tracking Autofocus Next Year

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Want to focus your camera simply by looking at a particular area of the viewfinder? If you’re a Sony shooter, you might be enjoying that feature as early as next year. The company is reportedly working on building Eye Tracking autofocus into its cameras, with the initial version arriving in a flagship camera sometime in 2014.
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Facebook Announces Major New Search Features for Unearthing Photos

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Facebook summoned a group of tech journalists to its Menlo Park headquarters this morning to unveil the latest products its legions of programmers have been hard at work building. The major announcement was a new search engine called “Graph Search,” which will allow users to run extremely powerful search queries on the social networks database of 1 billion members, 1 trillion social connections, and 240 billion photos.
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Olympus Patent Shows Strange Futuristic Monocle-Style External Viewfinder

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Google has been working some time now on a camera-equipped device that’s worn over (or above) the eye. Olympus has something similar going on, but instead of a full-fledged camera, their device only serves as an external viewfinder for a separate digital camera.
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RIM Patents Phone Feature for Preventing the “Inconspicuous Use of Cameras”

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When consumer electronic products have photographs leaked to the world prior to their official announcements, they’re often blurry shots that appear to have been taken with a quick snap of a smartphone camera by some not-so-loyal employee or factory worker. Blackberry maker RIM wants to help companies who value privacy plug up these leaks, and has created a smartphone feature that is meant to make snapping stealthy shots a much more difficult thing to do.
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Nikon Patents a Large Hybrid Viewfinder for Compact Cameras

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Electronic viewfinders have become all the rage as of late through the rise of the mirrorless camera, but many photographers still prefer optical viewfinders due to certain weaknesses of EVFs. One major drawback is the fact that the scene is often laggy, especially in low-light situations, making it difficult to track a moving subject.

Nikon is apparently trying to combine the best of the OVF and EVF worlds by developing a new giant viewfinder that’s see-through.
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Toshiba Building a Lytro-like Smartphone Cam That Lets You Refocus Post-Shot

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Lytro is currently the only camera on the market that lets you refocus photographs after they’re shot, thanks to its fancy schmancy (and proprietary) light field technology, but it won’t be the only one for long. Toshiba is reportedly developing its own Lytro-style camera that will target a different segment of the photography market: smartphone and tablet photographers.
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Apple Patents Method of Generating HDR Photos from Single Exposures

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High dynamic range (HDR) mode is becoming a standard feature in newer digital cameras and smartphones. By snapping multiple photographs at different exposure levels, the camera can automatically generate an image that captures a greater range of light and dark areas than a standard photograph. However, the technique does have its weaknesses. Artifacts appear if any changes occur in the scene between the different shots, which limits the scenarios in which the technique can be used.

Apple wants to overcome this issue by implementing an HDR mode that only requires a single exposure. A recently published patent shows that Apple is well on its way to doing so.
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Nikon Patent Shows a Digital Back That Turns 35mm Film SLRs Into DSLRs

Whoa… Big news on the camera patent scouting front today: Nikon appears to be tinkering with the idea with creating a special 35mm SLR replacement back that would turn a film camera into a digital camera!
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Canon Patent Reveals a Smaller Optical Viewfinder with 100% Coverage

A Canon patent filed in May of last year and published last week reveals that the company has a new optical viewfinder up its sleeve that offers both a compactness and 100% coverage. While 100% coverage is a standard feature in high-end DSLRs, the new technology may help bring it to smaller and lighter cameras that have traditionally displayed less than what is actually captured.
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