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Thursday, 16 August 2012


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A trillion fps? Spray and pray, spray and pray...

Interesting. However, much of the possible usage put forward can as easily be resolved using sound rather than light.

That's a Sigma 28-70/2.8 zoom lens on that femtocamera! Wow!


I can see the threads on the forums:

The temporal distortions on this new lens are horrible! I shot the graduation of my daughter, and half of the images show her 12th birthday!

Way cool!

I wonder if this might be a useful tool for lens makers. By allowing direct observation of how light is reflected, focused, and scattered, lens designs made with the help of computer calculations can be put to the test.

What really bakes my noodle is how the light bouncing around inside the tomato makes it glow long after the main light show. We have experience with light from a certain angle revealing the texture of something - to see how it feels without touching it. Now we can have new experiences that tell us even more.

I studied the history of photography in college while completing my photography course; this has to be one of the most significant moments in photography to this date. Science fiction becomes science now. Wonderous.

Worlds coolest LavaLamp.

Where will Photoshop place the remove space-time warping filter? Looks to me like there's going to be a whole new tab added to Camera RAW.

A development that certainly challenges the boundaries of imagination.

@ Sean: Actually, it's not as much a big moment for "photography" but rather for scientific applications of photography. It's a logical progression made possible by today's inexpensively available massive data storage technologies and computational power.

Harold Edgerton's seminal work in modern (single-camera) high-speed photography (also performed at MIT) produced some fascinating and beautiful images. The "milk drop" and "apple bullet" images have become almost cliche cultural icons. But its significance was mainly in scientific study rather than new aesthetic frontiers.

If you're looking for the original pioneer of stop-motion photography you have to go back 70+ years before Edgerton. Britsh photographer Eadweard Muybridge conducted the first (known) motion studies 70+ years before even Edgerton's work in the 1950's. (If you're in Chicago and want to see one in-person the Art Institute of Chicago actually has one of Muybridge's prints on exhibit right now.)

Again, though, it was a big moment for discovery of science's use of photography but not so much for photography, per se.

Thanks for the exposure!

Russell Brown sees this and his brain explodes, all caught in femtophase. LOL

Dear folks,

A bit of technical nomenclature that may confuse people who aren't familiar with it.

In electro optics and photonics, the habit is to talk about time regimes by the units that are used. In other words, anything measured in, say, picoseconds (that is, less than a nanosecond) is just referred to as "picosecond" with no number attached.

It's confusing at first-- you read a reference to a "picosecond detector" and you assume a trillionth of a second. But it could actually be 10 or 100 picoseconds. One gets used to it.

So, when Ramesh refers to femtosecond work, what he really means is that they're slicing things finer than a picosecond.

pax / Ctein

My thinking has been expanded. No wonder I've had a headache all day! : ]

As an artist I see so many possible uses for this. Truly exciting in so many ways.

Femtophotography requires a very fancy intervalometer, so when femtophotography is available in consumer cameras Canonians will finally get an onboard intervalometer :-)

Very cool! It's an interesting extension of high speed sampling technology - something fiber optics uses today for testing called "optical time domain reflectometry" that takes "snapshots" of optical fiber -speeded up considerably. OTDRs can look at a length of fiber as short as a meter, about 5 nanoseconds (billionths of a sec).
BTW, Doc. Edgerton who did all those famous strobe shots (he invented the strobe first) founded a company called EG&G which was mainly involved in detonating nuclear bombs for the US government. Another development from EG&G was high dynamic range film which used three layers of emulsions with different sensitivities to record wide ranges of light. One of the uses was taking photos of nuclear blasts-photos you have seen many times.

No much worries about camera shake then......

I stand corrected Ken, my photography course was part of the Applied Science Department at the Dublin Institute of Technology. It's the unforeseen scientific potential of a device such as this which really captures my imagination. Watching the motion of photons moving through a bottle of coke was something which 'lit up' the now rusting and dark scientific corner of my brain. Certainly Edward Muggeridge was the pioneer.

For me it is a stroboscope with very short flash. Presentation, unfortunately, is very much TED-oriented -- too much hype. This guy is co-director of future storytelling.

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