Nikon, Videos

Video: NIKKOR Lens Technology

Tue October 14, 2014

If you have ever been curious how optical image stabilization and the silent wave motor work on a lens, here’s an interesting promo video that gives some insight of the many mechanical technology (Vibration Reduction, Silent Wave Motor, rounded diaphragm, the lens barrel mechanism) and optical technology that go to make a NIKKOR lens.

via diyphotography


Visit the Liwa Desert compliments of Google Street View filmed on the back of a camel

Mon October 13, 2014

The camel apparently even has a name: Raffia. With a 360-degree Trekker camera mounted (and wobbling) precariously on its back, Raffia ambled its merry way hither and thither across the Liwa Oasis, which is a 100 kilometer-wide (62-mile) desert situated southeast of Abu Dhabi (the capital city) and Dubai in the United Arab Emirates. Liwa is close to the border of Saudi Arabia. As deserts go, the view north, east, south and west are sand dunes (which can reach a height of 25-40 meters)… and of at least one mad Englishman [I presume. North East view.]. And, as oases go, the south west view actually shows palm trees and date farming using drip irrigation and greenhouses.

But, don’t let the Street Views of sand dunes stretching as far as the eyes can see fool you. Liwa consists of about 50 villages (population of around 20,000) and is connected to Abu Dhabi by a modern, multilane highway. When they are not date farming, the men from Liwa (Bani Yas tribe) are [traditionally] pearl divers on the coast during the summer months.

The importance of tourism is on the rise. Liwa Hotel in Muzayri` boasts four stars. Liwa Rest House, in the same village and run by the government of Abu Dhabi, is the second establishment in the oasis. It is primarily aimed at minor officials and businessmen. Construction has begun on a third, 5 star, resourt (named Qasr Al Sarab). The nearby Moreeb dune 22°59′N 53°47′E, 22 km south of Muzayri` on a small road (15 km as the crow flies), with 300 meter height [is] one of the largest dunes in the world, [and] attracts every year during the Liwa festival a large number of international and local visitors coming to see the offroad and camel racing events.

Will Google one day use a drone instead of cars, bicycles and camels, especially to map inacessible places (to mere mortals)?

It’s Thanksgiving today in Canada, so Happy Thanksgiving!

via geekologie

Fun Stuff, Videos

20 years from now, your grandkid will be AMAZED at this “New” device

Sat October 11, 2014

It’s wireless, touch-activated, and amazingly does not require a power source (and hence no need for cables and does not heat up). It’s intuitive (navigation, bookmarking), handheld and features an extra-large expandable hi-definition screen with zero display lag. And you won’t even mind if your kid should accidentally drop it on the floor. The Bookbook… simply amazing!

via ikeahackers


A Life With Leica: Featuring Thorsten von Overgaard

Fri September 26, 2014

Northpass Media filmed this video over 7 days in May 2014, featuring Danish photographer Thorsten von Overgaard as he practices his craft throughout the streets of Rome, Italy. Thorsten Von Overgaard is a Danish writer and photographer, specializing in portrait photography and documentary photography, known for writings about photography and as an educator. Filmed with RED Scarlet and RED Epic cameras.

A Life With Leica from Northpass Media on Vimeo.

The project became larger than just one documentary as Northpass Media now plan to do a series on Leica photographers. So more documentaries will come in the future, and likely one or more longer documentaries that can be downloaded. Follow the project at and A Life With Leica on Facebook.

For me it was nice for a change to just show up when and where they directed. And when I left Rome I also left the rest of the editing to them. So the documentary is as new and fresh to me as it is to you!

The Story Behind That Picture: “A Life With Leica”

via diyphotography


Mark Gee’s Full Moon Silhouettes

Sun September 7, 2014

Video Credit & Copyright: Mark Gee

Video Credit & Copyright: Mark Gee

This is an amazing video of a full moon rise over Mount Victoria Lookout in Wellington, New Zealand. On January 28, 2013, after many previous failed attempts at videotaping a full moonrise, Mark Gee finally placed his camera about 2.1km away on the other side of the city and waited for the full moon to rise. What he caught using the video capability of his Canon 1D MK4 is a beautifully simple example of silhouette photography with the people on Mount Victoria Lookout in silhouette against the moon.

Full Moon Silhouettes from Mark Gee on Vimeo.

This is not a time lapse and, as the moon makes its rise, you can actually see a couple calmly walking into the scene. Then, as the moon rises higher, it reveals other people who had been there all along waiting for the spectacle to start. Though the accompanying music is beautiful, I actually turned it off and enjoyed the show “au naturel.”

The video is as it came off the memory card and there has been no manipulation whatsoever. Technically it was quite a challenge to get the final result. I shot it on a Canon ID MkIV in video mode with a Canon EF 500mm f/4L and a Canon 2x extender II, giving me the equivalent focal length of 1300mm.

via apod


The Transparent Display Edges Closer to Reality as MIT Student Confines Light in a Thin Slab of Photonic Crystal

Tue August 26, 2014

The transparent display in many SciFi movies and TV shows (including Extant) looks really cool. The problem has always been that light escapes the transparent glass. Recently, MIT graduate student Wade Hsu and colleagues have shown that they are now able to confine light in the surface of a photonic crystal slab and thus design a transparent display using nanoparticles.

We can take a piece of glass which is originally transparent and put in nanoparticles that only scatter a particular, narrow bandwidth of light. Light in the visible spectrum is made of many different wavelengths from 300 nanometers to 750 nanometers. If we have such a structure, then most of the light can pass through, so it is still transparent, but if we project light of that particular narrow bandwidth, light can be scattered strongly as if it were hitting a regular screen. -Wade Hsu

Read the whole article at: MIT

Editor’s note: Pair this transparent display with the transparent solar cell and you could have a truly interesting product.


#TimsDark Experiment: Canadian Tim Hortons Coffee Shop Where Servers Wear Infrared Goggles and Customers Drink In Complete Darkness

Mon August 25, 2014

I hope US fast food firm Burger King (BK) knows what it is getting into with the purchase of Canadian iconic Tim Hortons coffee shops. The young execs at BK better realize that this is not a shop that you buy and then drop when you have no need of it anymore: it could well ignite the simmering resentment Canadians feel toward their neighbor (and best friend) to the south.

In one “experiment,” a Timmys was painted completely black outside and cloistered so it was pitch black inside — as in, you can see zilch.

Customers gingerly felt their way inside as servers wearing infrared goggles directed them to the counter, took their orders and served them their order of Double-Double. Apparently, the extreme darkness heightened their sense of taste and a great-tasting coffee was elevated to even greater heights of flavor.

Of course, if you believe this was an actual store with actual customers, there’s still a bridge for sale somewhere…


Microsoft Turns Your Long Boring Video Into A Smooth Hyperlapse Video

Wed August 13, 2014

© microsoft

© microsoft

We know enough not to subject our family and friends to our long boring videos (perhaps from our GoPro or Google Glass). We could speed them up to shorten them into an acceptably short version. Unfortunately, speeding up a video also amplifies every little camera shake, yielding an erratic, jerky video.

Now, Microsoft may have an answer: it has presented a Proxy Geometry algorithm that can take your long video and convert in into a time-lapse video with a smoothly moving camera. They call the result a hyperlapse video. It is quite impressive. No idea if they will make the algorithm publicly available anytime soon.

Read the paper and view the technical video at: microsoft


Extracting Sound From Visual Cues: You Probably Don’t Want To Share Secrets While Eating From A Bag of Potato Chips

Tue August 5, 2014

If you think that people are hacking your cellphone and listening to your conversations, this news should freak you out even more.

Researchers at MIT, Microsoft, and Adobe have developed an algorithm that can reconstruct an audio signal by analyzing minute vibrations of objects depicted in a video, for example:

  • Intelligible speech from the vibrations of a potato-chip bag photographed from 15 feet away through soundproof glass.
  • Useful audio signals from videos of aluminum foil, the surface of a glass of water, and even the leaves of a potted plant (vibrating at less than a hundredth of a pixel).

In one experiment, they recovered sound from the vibrating earbuds plugged into a laptop playing music. Then, they played the garbled sound bites back to Shazam to automatically recognize and identify the song being played.

“When sound hits an object, it causes the object to vibrate,” says Abe Davis, a graduate student in electrical engineering and computer science at MIT and first author on the new paper. “The motion of this vibration creates a very subtle visual signal that’s usually invisible to the naked eye. People didn’t realize that this information was there.”

Luckily, you cannot recover these sound bites using a regular smart phone video. The researchers explain that reconstructing audio from video “requires that the frequency of the video samples — the number of frames of video captured per second — be higher than the frequency of the audio signal.

So, you need a camera capable of filming at high-speed (2,000 to 6,000 fps) — which is much faster than the 60 fps possible with some smartphones and much faster than the 200fps possible with some digital cameras, but well below the frame rates of the best commercial high-speed cameras, which can top 100,000 frames per second.

The researchers even took advantage of the rolling shutter effect exhibited by some cameras to recover sound from a plastic bag of candy.

Read more about The Visual Microphone: Passive Recovery of Sound from Video.

via MITnews


Close-up Footage of The Predatory Attack of The Great White Shark

Tue August 5, 2014

In 2013, a team from the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution took a specially equipped REMUS “SharkCam” underwater vehicle to Guadalupe Island in Mexico to film great white sharks in the wild.

What you are about to see is not the usual shark attack through the bars of a shark cage we are so used to seeing in shark documentaries. You are about to get eye-to-eye with Great White Sharks! At @ 1:28, 1:50 and 3:05, you won’t want to miss the attack footage. The grating sounds of teeth against metal just add to the terrifying sight.

REMUS SharkCam: The hunter and the hunted from Woods Hole Oceanographic Inst. on Vimeo.

Reminds me of an attack dog tenaciously biting down on an intruder’s arm. The sharks must be mistaking the SharkCam for a real underwater animal that has invaded its territory. That the SharkCam came out of these predatory attacks in one piece attest to its tough construction.

via DIYPhotography

Articles, Videos

MIT Media Lab Develops Display Technology That Automatically Corrects For Vision Defects

Sat August 2, 2014

© Christine Daniloff/MIT - Click to view animation

© Christine Daniloff/MIT – Click to view animation

MIT Media Lab researchers have developed a new display technology that automatically corrects for vision defects and could lead to e-reader and smartphone displays that let users dispense with glasses.

Imagine being able to consult your car’s dashboard-mounted GPS display without putting your glasses on (for far-sighted drivers) or read your tablet’s display without the need for reading glasses.

The vision-correcting display projects slightly different images to different parts of the viewer’s pupil. Using technology the Camera Culture Group has already developed for their glasses-free 3-D displays, two liquid-crystal displays (LCDs) are used in parallel to carefully tailor the images displayed on the LCDs to each other to allow the system to mask perspectives. The researchers plan to incorporate a third project which diagnoses vision defects so that the same device could determine the user’s prescription and automatically correct for it.

The first spectacles were invented in the 13th century. Today, of course, we have contact lenses and surgery, but it’s all invasive in the sense that you either have to put something in your eye, wear something on your head, or undergo surgery. We have a different solution that basically puts the glasses on the display, rather than on your head. It will not be able to help you see the rest of the world more sharply, but today, we spend a huge portion of our time interacting with the digital world.
– Gordon Wetzstein/MIT

Read the whole article at: MIT News


Nikon D810: “Every Moment Counts (A Short Film Presented By Nikon Canada)”

Wed July 16, 2014

With its new D810, Nikon demonstrates the advanced cinematic power of its HD-SLR cameras (D4S, D4 and D810) for capturing broadcast quality video in “Every Moment Counts,” a short film directed by Preston Kanak.

“Every Moment Counts” creates an intimate portrait of Manny Vaughn, a real-life cod fisherman from Nova Scotia’s New Minas/Centreville community.

The story is a slice of life representing essential themes of the local culture — hard work, family, and dedication — set against the breathtaking beauty of the region.

Preston Kanak is a celebrated cinematographer who specializes in short films and time-lapse photography. He filmed his latest project, the “Every Moment Counts” campaign, in select locations around Nova Scotia to create an intimate portrait of a local rural fisherman and the thrilling geography of East Coast life. His purpose was to capture and share the beauty of the Canada’s East Coast with the rest of the country.

Utilizing the Nikon D4S, D4 and D810 HD-SLR cameras exclusively to create a photo and video series, Preston sought to do justice to the country’s most distinctive province by capturing its rugged and earthy landscape, unique light conditions, memorable locations, and east-coast culture.

In order to fully capture the essence of the environment in challenging shooting situations, Preston utilized specialized camera movements using camera sliders, cranes, underwater housing and octocopters. He also took advantage of the Nikon D4’s powerful features to create a series of intimate, stylized portraits of the fisherman using continuous lighting setups.

The Every Moment Counts campaign includes a photo series, 30-second teaser, three-minute documentary and a behind-the-scenes video discussing the capabilities of Nikon’s professional HD-SLRs and the technical specifications that make the Nikon products indispensable for filmmakers.

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