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Your current location :Home > News > Ep 1497 Lytro is the camera of the future

Ep 1497 Lytro is the camera of the future

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Created: 06/24/2011 Lytros Founder and CEO Ren Ng Ph.D. stopped by the BOL studio today to discuss his new product the Lytro Light Field Camera which allows you to focus different depths of field within one photograph. We picked his brain about how the technology works and how it will evolve into the art of photography and beyond. We also discuss the FTCs probe into Googles business practices as well as the upcoming possible overhaul of the United States Patent office rules and regulations. Lulzsec continues to make news and publish the identity of its victims while a rival hacker group calling themselves TeaMp0ison has vowed to out the members of Lulzsec by publishing Lulzsecs identities and personal information in retaliation. All this and more on todays Buzz Out Loud with special guest host from Android Atlas Antuan Goodwin who has a deep fear of Zombies.

Today is Friday June. 24 2011 my name is Steven -- I am Antuan Goodwin and I am Bryan song welcome to buzz out loud is cnets podcast of indeterminate length today is episode 1497 and we promised. And we delivered. A very special guest. There is that until a new light shows founder and CEO -- Ing in the house press three and asking questions were gonna have you guys. Ask him all the questions that you want as well. Weve seen and talked about on this exciting launch an announcement like has been everywhere rate Twitter. Well whats life been like the past you know say forty dollars that -- thanks a lot for having me on that the last 48 hours has been. Absolutely terrific. Will be the response having -- the world has -- been. Outrageously. Positive just a huge amount of traffic through -- website. And we had a great launch party on Wednesday to we had. Sector so they elect character either run around when you thought about -- -- -- -- -- it was it was amazing what a so now looking -- -- -- listeners and people listen a little bit about your background. You went to Stanford -- where you where you had your dissertation and this is kind of what sparked everything. Thats right yeah I was December for a long time came from Australia out to California myself. Now and -- underground and -- for grad school as well and I was doing all this rescission computer graphics. And and and its a very. You know visually driven person to love pictures love photos taking lots of pictures and lots of photos with film cameras -- -- digital cameras immersing and how you make pictures you know with the best new graphics. They were doing all this recent on this thing called the light field. And and taking you know 5000 you know and digital pictures -- resentment that will clearly what -- need to be doing is studying cameras and how the application of all the best computer graphics in the world could make cameras that are and thats how -- -- is born. -- so com where you. Would you describe -- can -- -- -- beforehand or definitely. Did a lot of rock climbing on the best friends affirmed you know the Rockland community. I Don -- youve got guns and -- -- That lets these days that -- -- Key West lower cameras these days. On and a lot of candid portraits and if youre gonna hang -- for roping youre trying to take pictures down you down a steep cliff. -- focusing on the -- of the right time and -- trying to active in answering around acquaintances has been difficult and enough. -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- And with all the things that we knew about firm to be graphics this. You know these days swear and use a -- movies straight and and so much of it is is can be generated and in a way that you just cant distinguish reality because we understand how light works so well. If we can -- in -- -- that you cant distinguish reality. And if you think about applying all of that knowledge all the technology to camera thats what you get with the photography. Now when the great things about this we showed off some these pictures and examples that are on light shows -- -- L light tiara light show dot com and check the picture gallery where. These pictures have been taken and after the ct. You can choose the focal point. That you want to focus on theyd use examples like flowers. For lovely ladies spaces and I clicked on antenna that did you like the island its -- well yeah we can find you know it looks well if we can buy an -- of Orleans -- -- -- which when media. Each prefer you when with a cat. Like notepad Im not a n podcasts L all cats and party of Vietnam develop that we talked about it we -- -- about the most -- the went through the glass windows and again gates on the glass window -- youre able to. You know to the political is between the little hole -- a -- of geometric -- and so on. Oh yeah this -- -- -- like of the four at least that was taken by Michael suit and you his photographer of the year a few years back. And he shot early on with -- -- that let you chemistry and it appears actually -- is been a real n you know referring to the company. And -- the when he talked about with you know that the grimy window via thats taken by Richard Cortez Hernandez Seattle I love that picture and the business to people -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- Love that picture because. Im very passionate about to. And pictures that tell stories you know and I think this. -- here really shows how -- she is taking -- photography. Not just the things -- instant shutter a decent picture with no delay. Focusing at the ct thats great for all of us. But for people there really wanna push the photographic art -- all of these new opportunities to take pictures that are inviting you to explore. Inviting you to interact in -- -- to discover. And that I called it in in back and -- risen and in my dissertation chuckled at the sensation -- discovery. And I think that sensation of discovery when you cant quite see something that you want to see and then you click and it comes into clear focus. Is just a magical. Alex Kelly child like like people here we dont giddy about it -- like the group that no one of the questions that everyone has a -- event you did have arm the cameras there. Now they where according to sources wrapped in me that -- leopard shark type sock stuffed animal and this is how we you know in this day and age of the leaks all over the Internet youve got to protect your properties. Thats right the camera is still very much under wraps the sharks were you know an idea from -- director photography Eric -- Eric is you know one of the premier underwater photographers in the world hes taken is amazing and -- CNET news pictures of -- -- shark jumping out of the water to catch -- seal. As a shot like that where the -- thankfully in the air in a suspended in the air. Thats -- -- -- he has a lot of sharks. Iran is apartment stuffed animals. But it at the last minute they decided that -- be the best thats -- and -- the camera but now the question is here we know. I think it can see how release you know big or small cameras art is the technology heres the light show. Is this the a lot of people are asking us is this going to be a consumer point and shoot camera or mortar and -- -- our gambling what is what is the you know. I guess the optics and the technology what it what form ctor you guys looking up you have to launch -- -- -- -- -- fields are applicable to anything with a lens in front of a sensor the technology is fundamental and that way and applies to all your camera optical systems. What were really interest it to do is to take this technology out of the lab. Where used to be you know are really about vary. Research oriented large. Large -- -- -- systems. And bring it to the masses are gonna do that half -- -- come out with something that you know -- -- for industrial settings or something that is priced out of the consumer market. This is gonna be. Consumer form ctor consumer price point for everybody. Excellent so on what price when are you looking to target and then its gonna -- competitively priced thats. Buzzwords that I got -- right price right. Thank you this you notice that it has nothing better right now you can -- -- him later for drive though none of thats fine on another question completely related so. -- are you guys looking to launch this by the end of the year or -- -- -- or an -- 2012 -- is gonna be in . And Latin. Excellent now its its a really exciting time to be this close to being able to bring this. They got you know that goes back to the mid 1990s tremendous technology from these two professors show -- VoIP and hand -- -- -- came out in 1986 and has been. Cited -- thousands of times in research literature. And to be able to go through these progression of understanding in -- camera systems and small camera systems and now bringing out into something where. It can be for the whole world is -- -- -- and soup which. Yeah -- you guys thought about small camera systems and we know how mobile phones and cameras have exploded right iPhone four is one of the number one. Photos types of photos from a device uploaded to Flickr these days -- are you guys. And this is a very you know down the road question but. Are you guys looking news will be or opt in technology into mobile folders thats a mean that you have licensed on the road like where -- you thinking in that direction it would get. The Wii Fit. Its fully compatible with you cell phones with large systems -- investor all the rest of it. Im microscopes that technology for -- humor across -- he has been put out by. Professional avoid Stanford and collaborate on that since graduating. In a cell -- space you know I think. That cellphones are so important all of us because they are dealing most of these still ultra casualty in a picture so you can document everything in your life right. And I think that really what we see in the market today is just this exploding interest in more more picture taking. And I think that what underlies that is. As human beings we just have this. In this -- need to be able to tell other people what weve been doing visually you know if -- -- back to the cave paintings in the discover this. Kate -- -- in France now that from the third at years ago right now. Its an amazing picture you know like all these cattle like jumping over Venus and with -- -- -- Internet and havent -- it and its such action picture and you can just -- -- feel like. Someone that was out there on -- hunt. Was just really compelled to wanna lay it down for posterity and into the can make you know the 1830s. The -- aria type you know those that that first -- and really brought photography to the masses and it was this you know silver. Silver plate. It to put these these chemicals on I think it started with you with chloride in with -- -- -- and things like this is really talks. And in the very first week after cigar. Brought this thing out. In a portrait houses sprang up all across Paris. And people would bring their milies to try to take pictures to -- and we never able to take a picture of the mily before. A mister really -- in a pain and and and and it was really hard to take these pictures you know you had to sit there for a couple minutes. To be mentioned -- at the for a couple minutes to have your picture taken with the eight in what happens is that if you try to look at -- camera. Your eyes are gonna blur because you cant keep your eyes still for that -- or you know your arms -- -- movies just not possible to do have to close their eyes. And -- would have to sit in a chair with an iron collar hold themselves to load up these exposures to work. Its just think about the links that these people all across -- went to capture those pictures -- when you look at you know a digital pictures today. You know that that -- energy is there for people who just want to take pictures but Smartphones but people -- this craving for. The great pictures. Of the people that they love it so that drives in enormous camera market dedicated camera market it was like 38 billion dollars last year in sales. Projected to grow to 44 billion dollars in 2015 and thats before the innovations that -- your technology -- like to wants to bring back to the space so you know the history of progression of -- presenting them very passionate about as well. Okay on we would definitely less see more questions but we wanted to get questions that. -- audiences -- asking of you so insulin theres your little a couple of -- ruling by the of the one that I keep -- the most is that how -- the file size or photos that captured in the format compared with something like JPEG -- raw -- again and -- -- Sodomy and its file and it can be comparable to their regular picture files on. And it really comes onto compression level so it might be a slightly larger depending on where we end up but its not -- to be like an order of magnitude larger than a picture it was -- -- their -- kind of file. It it in here really has to be because this information never collecting is is not a photograph it and -- it collects all this extra information. And now that said once you have a light fuel engine thats our software -- form the pictures from that light -- Well after that you know you could save as JPEG ship it out -- of course used interactive capability right. So what we want to make sure is that you know people dont just has this powerful technology under the hood for the photographer and then. He should not in your friends and -- pictured and even know. When you violate your camera its something that you can -- -- -- exciting content with and that is why we have launched the company with these living pictures on our website. That is what people are gonna -- to share with different and mily and if you think about it right when you program lets -- when you guys went in at this on his software does it right. The problem with formats in the past and with its hit for JPEG or raw was that the modern suffer infrastructure of the world. But with the sufferers -- for the world at that time headed. Grown enough so that -- it wasnt a pain and yet to download software of -- compatible on its findings. Today with modern -- technologies we can deliver something where on mobile phones. You know on -- a web browser now on the iPad people can see -- living pictures without installing anything. And thats the simplicity. In unification experience that we want to deliver to our customers and problems. Now home on the demos on your web pages it is he using html five to read these files depends where you look at it its either flash or html fives on -- browsers an additional five in in I think thats our and a mobile phone additional five and routes so for someone lets say lets -- my mom who in the future -- electric camera. Will she will she need to use some sort of -- -- software on her own computer initially to interact with photos yeah initially. And its you know and thats from whats gonna happen and -- which she shares with view or with -- anyone else in the world on the dont need to -- to appreciate the living picture. Now how does the thats the of them for the -- -- that can now. How -- -- time between shots. A different take longer -- -- -- pictures yet its a good question and you know were not ready to go into this and the specifics on a product right now is a lot of those things are still in development but -- we -- -- exclusive grand. -- -- I dont see a similar thing is this those are right -- how much more -- you want Bryan on the game wont think youre gonna have been to places theyve. But -- -- into a lot of physics and -- a data center visitors visa. Inherently you know with -- the technology. This is a single shot runs its not taking any pictures intransigent together so inherently light fields are at -- -- speed. Or potentially ster exposures and for commission and -- because shipments. So you know things like that shot to -- speed and it multiple pictures really disconnected it electronic systems is independently. So on the you know that we didnt see too many -- -- Action shots like whats your runner summit thrown down a slam dunk like will be able to handle that okay would definitely. And I think -- -- -- the -- this I think a picture of a lot of pictures are still coming through going up to the -- working with I think thats one of a chain link fence with a -- some volleyball players in the background I think. You know its all about theres about despite the positive difference in action shots out there and adds to poll and in ct thats one of the -- -- -- theres a baby shop on there. And this is that it is a friend Eric -- not yet it theres -- key. This is like happy -- -- in the world that I a lot of pictures and maybe cut. And the amazing thing but this picture which you might not be able Tel Aviv -- the close the its the -- on a swing at the park. I dont know -- you guys have ever tried to take a picture of a baby on so many as the Nazis Nancy. And its a great -- because they love -- -- just love being on the -- you know. But its with a conventional camera and mean in that you have to a focus in UG -- -- at that half press writes in unit that thats thats a really thing where. Complications. Just threaten more action to the beach just means lots of people take the -- -- when -- dont know we need to do that its like -- of zero point. Half precedent to -- focuses somewhere and just wait for the -- to try to go through that point. Its these impossible. And it shot you just click it -- it -- you can focus after the ct in any -- you can if its perfectly in focus that sounds very compelling right there would just click it yet. -- -- and something which is not just the right focus but also at. At the right -- you click it takes instantly without any delay. And that -- tell -- is one -- Pictures of gonna be the next is now thats what about the opera. Opposite end of that people who enjoy things like long long exposures and will you still be able to do that third definitely and you know the thing about -- fuel photography. It is -- -- about this image to sufficiently that is. You know Im very passionate about. I was -- from film and cameras -- light filled with love Dell via with the -- that I use it really saturated colors outdoorsman. And that would digital cameras in the scene and craft of composition of the picture alt and control it at the creatively. -- -- and and and you know Im just really passionate about and if you photography fields so. Natural. Because it very much -- photography as weve known it. And this focusing the see through these pictures. -- so natural because it is just. The stuff theyll if you engine doing the physical work of the lens that would normally in -- -- -- focus ring. Which is due to physics and software is just an accurate simulation that investment we -- despite its high fidelity. So all the things you -- for photography you continue to work -- now. Indeed it is a bit more life in the picture preserved. Forever and up to -- -- that the one thing that everyone is worried about -- -- proprietary camera how much control to actually get. But I was really. The after the ct you know been able to -- -- out individually these but right right right definitely and you know that there are so many capabilities that come from late fields. And its gonna take time for us and for the ecosystem to bring all of those benefits -- the consumer over time this is gonna take years. But the amazing thing is that right at the gate -- had a living picture that distance you can never do before. And the file that it came from the -- hell file contains all of the richness of that data. For forever. So we have it had an example of flying bird it was a pigeon shot. In Japan three years ago with an early if -- -- agent not an -- and no no definitely not at all. And where and under united animal cruelty at -- and anyway nothing to hook up. The amazing thing was that you know -- -- in insurers can capture the bird just at the right moment -- it was -- by. And it used to be focusing only. The demo we developed our 3-D capabilities and built that -- last year the seem like -- few files from three years ago. I became treaty -- if you put glasses on you can see if flying bird treaty. Even without glasses we have this humorous if 3-D that lets you change the perspective. In the picture. Even without glasses you can -- three -- which is part. Power at a hearing now ray -- that yeah I do and a -- over -- -- definitely -- it is. There and to ask another question -- -- -- while hes looking at that I mean that of course is my mind -- Lori go. Users understand. That this is just like a 3-D TV in the dead in the good friend who. The -- that shot us talk about -- its a flying bird and a park in you can focus for decent stereo youre all go way up. So -- bar -- close the -- -- is the same time if you want and hes just talking about the -- -- bounce around and edited the pictures this fifteen its like you should carry heavier and one. I noticed people are watching this video that hopefully doesnt look. When you know were tech guys we -- -- stuff its fine its on your. And actually see the -- its focused r -- close CC can stereo right. And so the thing about is -- -- stereo and if you have a 3-D movie if you know no glasses the 3-D area. But even without glasses here we can change this perspective. Which is provides this in -- three to goes beyond what you can even see in the theaters and rent your kilometer right now Im INGs now you -- -- sign up you can go to -- -- satellite show. And theres email list write to science to getting -- how long is Alice. You want them. I cant say about -- to create we have been totally amazed at the level of interest and are so grateful to people -- you know. The support of the company now were gonna wrap things up its tablet final question. Obviously the chemistry is growing in exploding but its really competitive rates so for you what you think there -- some of the challenges that you see that you guys -- -- address out of the gates you know. To get people to really understand -- -- but. Jump on board it. The additionally it. You know I think that what the companys CD is to keep our just a product design philosophy of our Silicon Valley. In a really intact as we -- Ford. Because when you look a lot of the cameras on the market today. I think a lot of them are are still polishing technology for technologys its sort of like you know this CPUs back. The CPU market you know back in the ninetys it was just -- megahertz for megahertz take me more megapixels is not visible to any of -- and share pictures. In our orientation is she really used it -- it dont you have to make it r camera. Faster more delightful or magical for people. And if we keep that end to end product experience. Intact -- -- -- -- which we have. Its amazing -- -- -- the chat -- can you apply these. The light sensor to video as well as that it is definitely satisfying very yeah so its a single shot in time and ideas -- you rate videos it really important thing for. Dallas area telescope array is -- Alice yeah -- -- -- that. Theyre -- there is a little assay ideas what other you know a final thought it holograms. Right. Back in the research phase scene was shot of elected camera we we could create a full parallel -- hologram. In -- a full color that you can move around and see things and in full 43 -- Many files collectively let the camera provide that that puppetry compatibility -- also -- Randall thank you so much thanks -- -- exactly so much for coming out Im pleased to name on the top of the list I signed up two days ago I really appreciate it but ctory here that they hit the light like the -- Latvians here whats on it. But I dont think humans become in the studio and -- -- definitely keep our eyes on you guys and we appreciate everything so were gonna go to an outbreak. On everyone and will be back with the stories of the day but -- that privilege. Catalog stating. -- -- -- -- -- -- I could be here -- economic guys. Welcome back to -- -- everybody reckoning has left the building and overall I was I was impressed by what we just -- the notable bit Kodak. I mean I look -- wowed I was allowed to even look thumbnails. Are all the -- all the different Apple -- cause them. And moving movie -- you -- -- couldnt see it but he moved his mouse. And and it changed it very settling on me to put a little bit of the perspectives and a couple of degrees yeah -- -- but its got the equivalent of doing it. It was really fun to see Sola were definitely sad about that product now you know were also excited about. -- delivering you guys the news for today so were gonna jump right into -- the Federal Trade Commission may be launching an antitrust probe. Of Google this is one of our predicted that informal list last year that they be -- -- -- regulators are poisoning Google with subpoenas. Once in a -- informal investigation into whether the Internet giant has abused its dominance in web search amber and advertising. People miliar with the with the probe in the matter now. Google has -- -- these antitrust probes in the past. And but this one is really specifically focused relating to Googles core search advertising business its biggest money maker because theres a lot of companies. Travel web sites Yelp and several -- -- the top my head that arent plain mean that Apples Google search -- their algorithm. -- Google products for example things like Google places. They rise the top when they still they really arent getting the traffic and exposure that somebodys more brand name sites like Expedia and kayak. And and others are getting so. Theyre gonna look into it down but this this is gonna be and -- in the C. How this is just an investigation right now this is not. Theyre not seen officially that you know Hulu has violated antitrust law but they are going to look into it to see what evidence they -- -- collected and potentially move forward. And then. See if they can kind of break Googles power it. Its interesting to me but it I dont relieve the problem with that you know one of the -- one of the things that you could argue is that some of these sites are successful because of Googles algorithm. Yeah I brought them to the top of the traffic -- mean you know it it I mean I dont really have an issue with you know thirteen four. For example. Did definition and having like Googles whatever dictionary -- pop over the top. The bother me very much elected I go to Google to find information -- -- -- to Google to find. But for you know for a particular thing -- -- in public and for a flight. Put in the flight number shows up at the top or -- punched him like you know something like flight from San Francisco new York and Google stuffed of the top. -- with that -- that the information that I want I mean maybe its not ir to people who run Google -- on Google if the private company. Thats the thing right you and I as the consumer. We dont think we care at all yeah I know literally consumers dont care and information come from as long as its accurate and get exactly but from the you know a business standpoint. If someones paying for you know Googles ad words and theyre still -- -- -- -- they should because rules voring their products. Then that thats where theres a problem so this is like that theres very funny because this is like a story we -- partake yesterday where somebody like. So one guy at the within the tragic -- them indicted in their car the cover Mac that was because he didnt realize electric with on -- was running -- smooth and on the soon Lexus car ran through news and dislike. I mean -- Google breathing -- people and thats a very easy way that theyre now. At a point where people are we rely on schools and bring traffic to our site and because were not where we think we should be on Google its not ir but -- -- Its one of -- things worth deflate in you know Google. Has done its job a little too well and now -- rely on it too much and as a result when it tries to push its own agenda now people are theres the backlash. Yes so -- noble will be following this and seen how this all six but its really a push by a lot of you know. Other sites you know industry that wants them to be looked -- a little more closely because like we said its I dont feel like its hurting me the consumer. Now also on if you wanna talk about other stories of sorry I just -- this link. In the legal world and anti trust will this is not necessarily on an antitrust issue against Apple that Apple is getting the approval. To bid for nortels assets we talked about how Google. On currently holds the bid for -- axis this is a variety of different wireless. Patents that are up for sale approximately 6000 a -- Expand wireless wireless four G data network in optical voice Internet service provider semiconductors and others even some that are related to Internet search. And social networking and you know the ideas whoever -- these patents. Will be able to use them you know in this ongoing patent litigation now that we see between different companies. Either for offense or defense but Apples now been invited you know -- -- to the party to be one of the bidders. In that what is it. Note what was the sorry Im -- and like losses -- -- currently. Googles bid has to be surpassed by at least when he nine million dollars. In order for them to give it up you know to a another -- the at the end of the day though. The all the owners of these -- will have the right to choose. Who the winner. Of you know of this being more will be -- for whatever interest even if the dollar value. Maybe you know goals that I wanna give you more and it keeps on becoming a -- -- in May not come down necessarily just the dollars and it it goes more beyond that. Yet but I mean -- the dollar have to be th,Ep 1497 Lytro is the camera of the future.