The Lytro Camera Is Revolutionary, But It’s No iPhone | Xconomy

Here’s the key point about the Lytro that blows up all of our old notions about photography: When you have sensors with such high resolution that you can afford to break up the image into thousands of mini-images, you can perform some very interesting math on the resulting data. You don’t need a bunch of clunky, heavy, expensive optics to make sure that light rays from the scene converge into a focused image on the sensor. You no longer care about focus at all, because if you compare all the mini-images, you can reason backward to figure out where each ray of light in a scene came from. You end up, in essence, with a three-dimensional record of the space in front of the camera (that’s what “light field” means), and from this record you can reconstruct imaginary pictures showing what any slice of that 3D space would have looked like if you had tried to focus on it.

via The Lytro Camera Is Revolutionary, But It’s No iPhone | Xconomy.

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