If you go outside on August 22nd and start waving at the sky for a few consecutive months*, chances are you might be able to spot yourself on Google Maps in the near future.
On that date, Virginia-based company GeoEye will launch the GeoEye-1 satellite from Vandenburg Air Force Base in California. When it reaches its orbit, GeoEye-1 will start snapping photos of Earth – and it will do so fast. The satellite can take high-resolution photos of an area the size of Texas within a day.
GeoEye-1, holding an ultra high-resolution digital camera attached to a massive telescope, will be able to take clear images of objects just 20 inches across – a huge improvement over Google Earth’s current 3-foot resolution. At this resolution, we should soon be able to see the shapes of people in online maps – but still not license plates. Read more »
Tags: camera, geoeye, photography, satellite, space
Measuring in at a measly 2.3 ounces and 1.6 square inches in size, Toshiba’s IK-HD1 gets the honor of being the world’s tiniest HDTV camera.
The camera is truly, unbelievably tiny and looks more like a kids’ toy than something that can capture stunning high-resolution video.
Of course, the unit comes at a price. It’s only aimed at the pro market for now, for uses such as a hidden camera on a reality show. We’re sure someone will think of other creative uses for this as well.
The company will be showing off its creation at the National Association of Broadcasters convention in Las Vegas this month. Hopefully they can find a way to shrink the cost as small as the camera’s size so we can all be shooting high-def video from tiny camcorders. [via DVICE]
Tags: camera, HD video, hdtv, toshiba
The University of Michigan has received a $10 million, five-year grant from the Army to develop a miniature spy bat complete with cameras, radar, recharging capability, a self-guidance system, and a radio to send surveillance data.
Scientists will try to shrink current electronics down to allow the bat to be six inches in length, weigh four ounces, and use only one watt of power. They will attempt to create a navigation system 1,000 times smaller and 1,000 times more energy efficient than today’s systems, and a communications system that’s one-tenth of today’s size. Read more »
Tags: army, camera, military, mini, quantum dots, solar power, spy bat, university of michigan, wind power
Samsung has announced an 8 MP CMOS camera module that it claims to be the thinnest of its kind, measuring a tiny 8.5 mm thin.
Notable features of the new module include anti-shake, a 1 cm macro, face tracking technology, and a smile shutter feature that knows to snap a picture when it detects people smiling.
The company expects the new module to replace the 5 MP cameras found in today’s high-end camera phones by the end of the year.
Cell phone cameras are quickly catching up to today’s digital cameras, which will probably become extinct in a matter of years. It seems that putting all sorts of gadgets in one box is the way to go these days, so if you are thinking of buying a new camera hold off for a few months and buy one of the 8 MP cell phones when they are released.
Tags: camera, cell phone, cmos sensor, photography, samsung
British company ThruVision has developed a camera that can see exactly what you’re hiding under your clothes (including guns, explosives, and drugs) from up to 80 feet away.
Don’t worry, the camera can’t see any outline of your body – only what you’re stashing in your pockets. As if that makes you feel any safer.
Called the T5000, the camera uses the unique T-rays that objects emit to identify them. All people and objects emit this low-level radiation, which means that the camera can, for example, tell the difference between cocaine and flour without actually “seeing” the powder.
The T5000 is suited toward airports but could be used in a variety of other situations. This is definitely one of the creepier recent inventions – hopefully we don’t see these popping up on our streets.
Tags: camera, privacy, t5000, thruvision
Vodafone is showing off a service called Otello at CeBIT in Germany that uses images, instead of words, to search the web.
Users can snap an image using a cell phone’s camera and send it in a message to the service. They will then get regular search results back about whatever was in the photo. For example, pictures of a newspaper, billboard, book cover, or place can be taken and sent to Otello to find out more about them.
Otello is currently undergoing trials with a German newspaper that lets users find out more about a story by taking a snapshot of an image in the article and sending it off. Sadly, there are currently no plans on bringing the service to a larger market.
Image-based searching has been expected for some time now, so it’s great to see services finally popping up taking advantage of better cameras and faster internet connections on today’s mobile phones to allow them to perform visual searches. There is a huge market for this, so hopefully Vodafone and other carriers can perfect the technology and bring it to the masses soon.
Tags: camera, cell phone, internet, otello, search, vodafone
Posted in Gadgets
by Alex on February 28th, 2008
Sony’s in-house “odo” team, based in California and with some help from Japan, was put together to design devices that tap into the “creativity, curiosity, and energy” of children in developing nations and that are capable of operating in extreme temperatures without the need for power supplies. Their latest imagining is a self-charging digital camera.
The camera resembles a white, plastic pizza cutter, and it is charged by rolling the wheel at the top on any surface. 15 seconds of rolling should generate enough power to take one picture – not a bad tradeoff considering that the thing never needs to be plugged in. Read more »
Tags: camera, green, odo, sony
With pico projectors coming soon, Sony Ericsson has picked a perfect time to file a patent describing self-adjusting mobile phone projectors.
The phone’s camera would analyze the picture coming from the projector and could adjust it for color, brightness, and focus. This would ensure the best possible image coming from your phone every single time.
This is a great idea, and it would work perfectly in cell phones considering that you can move them just about anywhere to project an image. We’re excited to see a system like this in action.
Tags: camera, cell phone, patent, pico projector, projector, sony ericsson