A camera with a (major) difference


Traditional cameras replicate, either on film or in a digital format, whatever was in front of the viewfinder when the photo is snapped. The ‘Descriptive Camera’, the brainchild of photographer and programmer Matt Richardson, takes a slightly different approach.

The ‘Descriptive Camera’ doesn’t take photographs in the conventional sense. It returns a description of whatever was snapped, which is printed out by the prototype device’s thermal printer. This is achieved via the camera sending the image taken to Mechanical Turk, an online service that uses humans to do things that computers cannot (at this point). A human describes the image and sends the results back to the camera for printing, a process that can take from 3 to 6 minutes according to the device’s inventor.

Richardson is now working on making this unusual camera a little more portable. “I’m very interested in how physical devices are packaged up. For the camera, I want to shrink it down a bit. I want to make it truly practical so anyone can take the camera out and about to take descriptive photos.”

Source: New York Times


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