The Lytro is here, and my company has one! I’ve been playing around with it for the last few days, and I must admit it’s an interesting toy.
In case you’ve been living under a photography rock, the Lytro is a whole new concept in taking pictures. Instead of capturing a 2-D plane of light, the Lytro captures “the light field” (I think combining a light field, a black hole, and a popsicle stick is how you make a lightsaber, so this is pretty advanced stuff!). This allows it to capture 3D images, the end result of which is that you can choose your focus point after snapping the picture rather than before.
It’s easier to just show you. Click on the photo below to play with the focus.
There, you see what I mean? Isn’t that cool?
The stylings of the Lytro, its interface, and even the box it’s packed in are very reminiscent of Apple (steal from the best!). The unique shape of the camera is key to making people see it as something truly new. If it looked like any other point-and-shoot, I don’t think this would get nearly as much attention. Unfortunately, that shape is a bit awkward both for shooting and for carrying around.
The camera’s interface is quite simple, offering just a few buttons and a touch screen. Sadly, the screen is much too small, meaning you have to download the images to your computer before you can enjoy them. Zoom is controlled by rubbing your finger along a ridge on top of the device. Unfortunately, the zoom control is located right where I naturally want to put my finger, resulting in a lot of accidental zooms.
So, what do you do with the Lytro? I see three options:
- Take normal pictures, knowing that you can be sloppy and fix the focus later. The workflow would be to shoot, focus, then save to JPG and do whatever you normally do with JPGs.
- Take creative depth-of-field pictures, and share them like I’ve done above. You have to be creative because it’s difficult to put something of interest in both the foreground and background.
- Convert the images to full 3-D. Yes, this is possible, though I don’t have the glasses or 3-D display to confirm this.
The biggest limiting factor right now is the image quality. Like early digital cameras, the resolution and clarity just aren’t there yet. Click Luckie’s butt to see a full-res JPG export. It’s 1080×1080 (the equivalent of only a 4”x4” print), and you can see that the image is very noisy.
That being said, the Lytro is a fun toy and another creative tool for people to play with. The technology has a lot of potential, and I’m sure we’ll see this advance quickly.
Though professional photographers may despise it (“Oh great, let’s take even more skill out of shooting!”), the light field camera is the (still somewhat distant) future of photography.
This is not funny! In what will go down as one of the worst April Fool’s jokes ever, it came out less than an hour before airing that tonight’s HBO premier of the second season of Game of Thrones is a fake.
Instead of the first show of the new season, HBO has decided to serve fans a one hour special hosted by Tyrion Lannister (wearing a jester’s outfit, no less). Granted, the special promises some cool behind-the-scenes goodies and previews of the upcoming season, but that does not make this okay.
The actual first episode will (supposedly) air next Sunday. HBO, you will pay for this.
More details, if you even care any more.
I’m really lazy about some things. Lazy to a fault. When something around me breaks or shows signs of wear, I often ignore it, knowing full well that it’s likely to cause even more trouble in the future.
Trouble is, I never learn my lesson because sometimes the strategy (laziness) actually pays off.
Several months ago, a rattling/clicking sound came from the gear-shifter-box-area-thing every time I started my car. I found that I could stop the noise simply by applying the brake when in park, so I did that for months.
One day, the noise just stopped and hasn’t returned. My car healed itself!
On our Maui vacation a few years back, I took a rental car — a compact sedan — off-roading. We were following a guide book which mentioned an off-the-beaten-path area accessible by a dirt road. The book said to ignore the warning sign at the head of the “road,” and I did so. That was a big mistake.
Recent rains turned the road into an absolute nightmare, and I still don’t know how we got in and out without a tow-truck. But the car didn’t come out unscathed. A rock jammed up in the axel somewhere, and we drove around for days with a terrible screeching and grinding. Karen finally convinced me to bring it back to the rental shop, and as we were on our way, we heard a crumbling and the falling away of the obsrtruction. The noise went away, and we kept the car for the rest of the trip with no one the wiser.
The battery charger for my camera stopped working. Just wouldn’t charge. I actually took the effort to look for a new charger, but they were so expensive that I said, “screw it.” (Did I mention I’m cheap too?) A while later, I tried the charger again out of frustration, and it now works!
All this being said, I do believe in the concept of jinxing, so I have a very bad feeling that I’m screwing myself over by even mentioning this philosophy of ignoring. After I click “post,” I fear my car may fall apart, I’ll receive a long-overdue call from the Maui rental company, and my camera will explode due to improperly charged batteries.
In the meantime, I’ll enjoy my self-healing consumer items.
Every few years I decide I need a new blog or website. Sometimes it gets a good amount of use. Other times it’s forgotten or abandoned almost immediately. I never know where the need stems from, but it’s become a repeating cycle.
Well, you’re looking at the most recent manifestation of my presence on the web. The funny thing is I don’t have anything in particular to say or share. Like many of my interests, it was more about getting there; once I arrive, however, I quickly lose interest.
I guess we’ll see if it’s the same for this one.
In a world where dogs need to poop, there is one man willing to facilitate such a bodily function. Sacrificing 30 minutes of his own time, this man guides his charges to the promised land: a nice patch of grass.
But this is no ordinary walk, for this man has a camera phone, and he knows how to use it. Witness the spectacle that results from an ordinary man faced with too much beauty.
This summer, witness A Simple Walk.