Cameras That Can See Through Walls!


– Ever wish you could see through walls? Well, now you can. (upbeat electronic music) The first cameras fundamentally changed the way we view the world. In fact, it helped
settle an age-old debate, do all four horse’s hooves come off the ground when it’s in a trot? Well, the answer, as it turns out, is yes. The unknowable became
knowable thanks to cameras. Now we’re in the digital
age and we’re just beginning to learn the possibilities
of digital cameras. For example, there’s
a company called Lytro that makes a camera that
uses light-field capture. What does that mean? Well, your typical digital camera takes light from one direction, and it hits an image
sensor, and that’s that. But the Lytro measures all
the light within a scene, up to 11 million rays of light, then it processes that
information in a computer. So what’s so good about that? It means that you can change
the focus of your picture after you’ve taken the photograph. You can even view this in 3D. But what about those of us
who, no matter what we try, end up with a blurry photo
every time we hit the shutter? Well, there are some researchers at MIT who are working on some
algorithms that can actually decode an image and make
a blurry one crisp clear. It’s called deconvolution. Now, this algorithm inverts motion blur so that it takes whatever was blurry and figures out what
should have been there so that you get a perfect shot every time. So deconvolution, light field capture, really what we’re talking about here is grabbing lots more information that’s out there than
we ever could before, and then calculating
in a way that’s useful. And you ain’t seen nothing yet. There are people working
on amazing applications for digital cameras that most
of us have never dreamed of. All right, check this out. Ramesh Raskar of MIT created a super slow-motion camera with 500 sensors that can trigger at one
trillionth of a second. This means this camera can
track the movement of photons. This is the speed of
light we’re talking about, The fastest stuff in the universe, and this camera can track it. What can you use it for
besides maybe making an instant replay moment
stretch into an eternity? How about actually using
it to see around corners? How? Imagine a person is in a
room and the camera outside takes a picture of the
room’s half open door. The light bounces off the door, scattering in all directions,
and some of that light bounces off the person in the room. Some of that light bounces back off of the door and then
returns to the camera. The key is that all these photons return at a slightly different
time, the difference in time in the photons’ arrival
can be analyzed to create an image of what was in the other room. This approach could be
applied to medical technology as a less invasive way of seeing what’s going on inside the human body. It’d be really useful for
things like cardiograms or even the dreaded colonoscopy. It could also be very useful
in emergency situations for searching for survivors in a collapsed or burning building,
and we could even mount these cameras on cars that
could trigger a braking system if it detected that another car is about to come
barreling around a corner. Cameras have changed the
way we understand our world and ourselves, and this coming generation of camera technology is going to give us what amounts to be
extrasensory perception. We’re gonna have access to data
we didn’t even know existed. So imagine watching the
formation of a rainbow or the moment that light
defracts when it hits water, or even the formation of a supernova, and maybe, just maybe, we’ll
finally develop technology that can allow me to take a
decent driver’s license photo. All right, I’ve got a question for you. What do you think is more important, having a camera that has all of these amazing capabilities, or
your sense of privacy? Leave us a comment and
tell us what you think, and while you’re at it, like this video if you enjoyed it, and
subscribe to our channel because we’ve got a lot more cool videos coming up in the future. (ambient electronic music)

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