Remember Lytro's promise to produce a light-field camera that captures all the light information in a scene so you can choose any focal distance you want on a computer LONG AFTER THE SHOT WAS TAKEN? Well they're selling them now. FOR REALS (or for fakes and they're just gonna run off with your money). They start at $400 for an 8GB (350-pictures) and $500 for a 16GB (750-pictures).
On the outside, the Lytro looks different--a smooth, two-tone elongated box 4.4 inches long and 1.6 inches square. At one end is the lens and at the other is an LCD touch-screen display; along the sides are power and shutter buttons, a USB port, and a touch-sensitive strip to move the F2 lens through its 8X zoom range.
The image is ready for refocusing operations immediately after it's taken, the company said. And though people can toy with the image on the 1.46-inch LCD display, they don't need to.
Another interesting feature: because the camera captures depth information, Lytro images can be viewed in 3D, something the company demonstrates with 3D TVs. The image information will be recorded for anyone who buys a Lytro camera, but the ability to view the 3D versions will come later with a future version of the company's software.
I'm still not sure how I feel about it. On one hand I'm all "COOL, THE FUTURE!" and on the other I can already see the new wave of self-proclaimed photographers. God, remember when it took a Quaker Oats can and patience to take a decent looking photo? "What, in middle school art class?" I took a picture of my balls and told the teacher it was a landscape.
Thanks to Carlos, josh, DontPublishMyEmail and azzphantom (WTF), who take pictures the old fashioned way: staring at something long enough until it's burnt into the brain. Shit, you're talking real oldschool!