[talks] Colloquium Speaker Marc Levoy Mon Oct 20, 4:30pm

Nicole E. Wagenblast nwagenbl at CS.Princeton.EDU
Tue Oct 14 10:34:37 EDT 2014


What Google Glass means for the future of photography 
Marc Levoy, Stanford University 
Monday, October 20, 4:30pm 
Computer Science 105 

Although head-mounted cameras (and displays) are not new, Google Glass has the potential to make these devices commonplace. This has implications for the practice, art, and uses of photography. So what's different about doing photography with Glass? First, Glass doesn't work like a conventional camera; it's hands-free, point-of-view, always available, and instantly triggerable. Second, Glass facilitates different uses than a conventional camera: recording documents, making visual todo lists, logging your life, and swapping eyes with other Glass users. Third, Glass will be an open platform, unlike most cameras. 

This is not easy, because Glass is a heterogeneous computing platform, with multiple processors having different performance, efficiency, and programmability. The challenge is to invent software abstractions that allow control over the camera as well as access to these specialized processors. Finally, devices like Glass that are head-mounted and perform computational photography in real time have the potential to give wearers "superhero vision", like seeing in the dark, or magnifying subtle motion or changes. If such devices can also perform computer vision in real time and are connected to the cloud, then they can do face recognition, live language translation, and information recall. The hard part is not imagining these capabilities, but deciding which ones are feasible, useful, and socially acceptable. 

Marc Levoy is the VMware Founders Professor of Computer Science, Emeritus. Education: B. Architecture and M.S. from Cornell (1976,1978), PhD in Computer Science from University of North Carolina (1989). In previous lives he worked on computer-assisted cartoon animation (1970s), volume rendering (1980s), 3D scanning (1990s), and computational photography (2000s), including light field photography and microscopy. At Stanford he taught computer graphics, digital photography, and the science of art. Outside of academia, Levoy co-designed the Google book scanner, launched Google's Street View project, and currently leads a team in GoogleX working on Project Glass and the Nexus 5's HDR+ mode. Awards: Charles Goodwin Sands Medal for best undergraduate thesis (1976), National Science Foundation Presidential Young Investigator (1991), ACM SIGGRAPH Computer Graphics Achievement Award (1996), ACM Fellow (2007). 

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