Billion-Pixel Camera Sees Five Times Better than 20/20 Vision

A new digital camera out of Duke University is set to change the way we take and use photographs, surpassing the limits of human biology and expanding on nature's power. 

What's the Latest Development?


Engineers at Duke University have created a billion-pixel digital camera which, by using a spherical lens similar to the human eye, is set to revolutionize how people take and use photographs. The exposure is so detailed, collecting five times more information than a person with 20/20 vision, that any portion of the photo can later be enlarged to show with great accuracy what is initially too small to be noticed. The $25 million project was funded by the Pentagon, which is interested in the high-resolution technology for aerial or land-based surveillance operations. 

What's the Big Idea?

Descriptions of the new device read like yesteryear's photographic advances, when individuals and families stood straight-faced before box cameras because holding a smile for the several minutes required to capture the image was impossible. The Wall Street Journal says of the new camera: "...it weighs 100 pounds and is about the size of two stacked microwave ovens. It also takes about 18 seconds to shoot a frame and record the data on a disk." Just as old technological advances are now taken for granted, it seems the future will easily best human biology, expanding the limits of technology beyond those of nature for the first time. 

Photo credit: Shutterstock.com

LinkedIn meets Tinder in this mindful networking app

Swipe right to make the connections that could change your career.

Getty Images
Sponsored
Swipe right. Match. Meet over coffee or set up a call.

No, we aren't talking about Tinder. Introducing Shapr, a free app that helps people with synergistic professional goals and skill sets easily meet and collaborate.

Keep reading Show less

Brain study finds circuits that may help you keep your cool

Research by neuroscientists at MIT's Picower Institute for Learning and Memory helps explain how the brain regulates arousal.

Photo by CHARLY TRIBALLEAU / AFP/ Getty Images
Mind & Brain

MIT News

The big day has come: You are taking your road test to get your driver's license. As you start your mom's car with a stern-faced evaluator in the passenger seat, you know you'll need to be alert but not so excited that you make mistakes. Even if you are simultaneously sleep-deprived and full of nervous energy, you need your brain to moderate your level of arousal so that you do your best.

Keep reading Show less

34 years ago, a KGB defector chillingly predicted modern America

A disturbing interview given by a KGB defector in 1984 describes America of today and outlines four stages of mass brainwashing used by the KGB.

Politics & Current Affairs
  • Bezmenov described this process as "a great brainwashing" which has four basic stages.
  • The first stage is called "demoralization" which takes from 15 to 20 years to achieve.
  • According to the former KGB agent, that is the minimum number of years it takes to re-educate one generation of students that is normally exposed to the ideology of its country.
Keep reading Show less

How pharmaceutical companies game the patent system

When these companies compete, in the current system, the people lose.

Top Video Splash
  • When a company reaches the top of the ladder, they typically kick it away so that others cannot climb up on it. The aim? So that another company can't compete.
  • When this happens in the pharmaceutical world, companies quickly apply for broad protection of their patents, which can last up to 20 years, and fence off research areas for others. The result of this? They stay at the top of the ladder, at the cost of everyday people benefitting from increased competition.
  • Since companies have worked out how to legally game the system, Amin argues we need to get rid of this "one size fits all" system, which treats product innovation the same as product invention. Companies should still receive an incentive for coming up with new products, he says, but not 20 years if the product is the result of "tweaking" an existing one.