2012 - The Year to Come (Part 4)

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Single lens reflex camera – OLED Viewfinder

Description: Sony Alpha

Although electronic viewfinders in DSLRs are currently the joke of the industry, this technology will fall into serious discussion in 2012. The advantages of electronic viewfinders come to play when faced with dark situations, providing itself as a solution for poorly lit environments in competing with optical viewfinders. The OLED viewfinder presented lately by Sony will be setting new standards. It will go into the market with a 2.3 million pixel electronic viewfinder, possibly the best resolution there is. Thanks to its OLED technology, it can come up with bright and high-contrast images, even for images in low lightning. Apart from this, it can show 100% of the image transferred from the sensor, meaning no parts of the image are lost on the edges of the viewfinder. Sony in now showing how things ought to be. The competition will certainly pick up in 2012.

Cameras – 3D images

Description: JVC

Digital cameras and camcorders will be able to shoot more 3D images in 2012. Three technologies often go in work in creating 3D images: camcorders mostly rely on double lenses where one lens captures the image for the right eye and the other one captures the image for the left. Both parts of the image is them combined by the processor to create a 3D image. As there is only one sensor for both images, both of them have to be a half-resolution reach. The other way to capture 3D images is to shoot both parts of the images with time lags. This way, even panoramic images can be formed in 3D. However, this technology is not suitable for videos due to the time lag in the images. Sony’s new technology is the one capable of capturing both images simultaneously with only one lens. To achieve this, there is a mirror behind the lens which channels both parts of the images in full resolution to different sensors.

Light-field cameras – Never Having to Take Blurred Photos Again

You see the perfect subjects, and you press the shutter button… only to realize afterwards that the image is blurred out, or the wrong part is in focus. Such a common error won’t exist with a light-field camera. With just a click to a part of the finished photo, the software will automatically change the area of focus. There is no possibility of a ruined image at all. The trick here works contrary to classic cameras. The light-field camera doesn’t save a 2D image, but really a 4D light field, i.e. the information of how the light-rays are spread in the area. The camera therefore doesn’t focus on any area, and it processes the intensity and angle of incidence of the light rays. Hundreds and thousands of micro lenses are present in front of the image sensors depending on the camera. In order to take a 16-pixels photo which records a 4D light field, a research team from Stanford University required 90,000 lenses. These cameras are already in use in the industry, and they are expectedly too expensive for the consumer market – until now. Lytro,is, for the first time, trying to capture this market. The company has yet to disclose just how many megapixels their device should have; they’ve only specified 11 megarays – that’s the number of light rays which can be captured by the micro lenses. The Lytro camera would cost around 400 Euros ($540).

Store light

Light-filed cameras do not store a subject pixel by pixel, but measure and capture the light-rays.

Micro-lenses array

Each lens breaks the light differently. The sensor can also store the direction of light besides the strengths.

Grid structure

The camera consists of up to 90,000 individual lenses.

Shift focus

The taken photo is only the raw material. The software determines only in retrospect how the focus progression should look like.

Description: Grid Structure

Internet / Software

HTML 5 – The end of Plug-ins

The end of browser plug-ins is coming closer in 2012. With HTML5, which is the new version of description language for websites, have audio, video and graphic elements directly integrated into it. This would make plug-ins like the Adobe Flash Player obsolete. Mobile game developers are already programming their works to be compatible to the corresponding HTML5 standard. Though the development of HTML5 is still in progress, the finished parts can readily be used. The latest versions of almost all browsers support the current HTML5 specification. This also include the new categories of individual elements of websites, such as navigation and articles. This enables search engines to function even faster and more accurately.

Description: HTML 5 – The end of Plug-ins

LTE in the city – Faster Connectivity

As the New Year settles in, mobile communication operating in cities may have the new, faster communication standard called Long Term Evolution (LTE). The tariffs are granted to the providers so that LTE can be used either for smartphones or tablets or as a landline substitute to DSL. Theoretically, the new standard can reach 100Mbit/sec, significantly faster than what that’s available now. In Malaysia, LTE is currently being rolled out, slowly and surely. DiGi has already posted up on their webpage stating that their recently announced ‘The Tomorrow Network’ modernisation effort will include equipping their network sites with LTE capabilities. You can expect more news from other providers as they roll out their plans as well.

Description: LTE in the city – Faster Connectivity

Windows 8 – Intelligent Apps

With Windows 8, Microsoft is introducing a new user interface which orientates closer to the Windows Phone 7’s interface. The strengthened HTML5-based Metro apps will play a major role which Microsoft wishes to market via a new Windows Store. In the best case scenario, the apps should be connected with the SkyDrive so that the applications will save our information online and users can seamlessly switch between PCs and tablets. Microsoft has introduced the new API WinRT with the ranges ‘Communication & Data’, ‘Graphics & Media’ as well as ‘Devices & Printing’ as the interface for this app. The apps can be developed with two different frameworks; with the first one, you can write you applications in the acquainted languages C/C++, Visual Basic and XAML. With the second framework, you program in HTML and Javascript. The shortly arriving Microsoft Visual Studio 11 is used as the development environment.

App Composition

Metro apps can be produced inter alia in HTML5 (framework II). The new APIWinRT is used as interface for the system.

Description: App Composition

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