Cool cameras and other stuff

Shoot first, focus later with Lytro camera

Written by Gail Bjork

Misfocused photos may soon be a thing of the past. The new Lycos camera will let you refocus after a photo is taken!

I can’t count how many photos I’ve taken through the years that have been misfocused. But misfocused photos may soon be a thing of the past. A new technology promises to let you focus after a photo is taken!

The Lytro camera uses a new kind of sensor called a light field sensor. It substitutes software for many of the internal parts of standard digital camera.

The technology captures all the light rays in a scene and, remarkably, allows you to focus a photo after it was shot.

According to the Lytro website, their light field sensor captures the color, intensity and vector direction of the rays of light. This directional information is completely lost with traditional camera sensors, which simply add up all the light rays and record them as a single amount of light.

You can change the focus point anywhere in a photo by clicking on it. Not only can you selectively focus, you’ll be able to bring everything into focus in an entire photo. Photos taken with the camera need to be viewed on a computer screen.

Lytro cameras do well at capturing pictures in low light without use of a flash. It can capture data for three-dimensional images that can be viewed on a computer while wearing 3-D glasses. It also eliminates shutter lag that plagues so many compact digital cameras.

Pricing is expected to be competitive with current consumer cameras. If you’re intrigued by the possibilities of this camera, which is expected to be released within a year, sign up at the Lytro website to be notified by email when it becomes available.

Photos by Lytros. Click on the area where you want to refocus.

About the author

Gail Bjork

Gail Bjork, who is passionate about digital photography, is the owner and editor of Digicamhelp.Gail is the author of three illustrated ebooks about digital photography. A number of her photos and digital photography related articles appear at other websites.In 2006, a series of her photos, People in the Louvre, were exhibited at the Underground Photo Gallery
in Iisalmi Finland. Eight of her photos taken in the Florida scrub are on permanent exhibition at Parrish Medical Center in Titusville, Florida.Gail served twelve years as an elected member of The School Board of Palm Beach County, Florida, one of the largest school districts in the U.S. She has also been the editor of a small town newspaper and a free-lance writer. Gail and her husband owned and ran several small businesses.