Man Finds DJI Customer Data Exposed, Gets Threat and Rejects $30K Bounty

Security researcher Kevin Finisterre recently found a flaw that exposed private customer data of the Chinese drone company DJI to the public. After reporting the bug to DJI’s bug bounty program, Finisterre received pushback and a legal threat. So instead of collecting his $30,000 bounty, Finisterre is now going public with his findings (and experience). Ars Technica reports that DJI developers had left private keys for the company’s web domains and cloud storage accounts within source code hosted on GitHub. Using the keys, Finisterre discovered that he was able to access private data uploaded by DJI customers — not
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This AI Creates Photo-Realistic Faces of People Who Don’t Exist

Instead of searching for the ideal model for a photo shoot, photographers of the future may be able to generate one using artificial intelligence. Neural networks these days can generate portraits of imaginary people. NVIDIA recently published a paper titled “Progressive Growing of GANs for Improved Quality, Stability, and Variation.” GAN stands for “generative adversarial network,” and it’s a system that uses two neural networks — one generates things and the other evaluates them. These algorithms are capable of generating artificial “photos” that look real to humans. For its project, NVIDIA found that training the neural network using low-resolution
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Olympus Unveils Smart Glasses with a 2.4-Megapixel Camera

Olympus today unveiled a new camera — one that’s unlike any of the company’s modern digital cameras. The 2.4-megapixel camera is found in the new Olympus EyeTrek Insight EI-10 smart glasses. Designed for “business applications,” the EI-10 glasses allows users to see the built-in display without blocking vision. The concept is the same as the functionality of Google’s Glass camera glasses, which were introduced in 2013 before being discontinued in 2015 (and then released for enterprise purposes this year). Unlike the Google Glass, which comes with the camera and display attached to a pair of glasses, the Olympus
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LiShield is a Smart LED Bulb Prevents Photos by Confusing Cameras

LiShield is a new LED light bulb technology that helps protect privacy by confusing cameras to prevent unauthorized photos. The bulb is the creation of a team of researchers at the University of California, San Diego. LiShield works on any digital camera that uses a rolling shutter and protects a physical scene from photography by flickering its smart LEDs in specialized waveforms to ruin the look of the captured photos with vertical bars across the frame. It can even create colored bars to further “encrypt” the scene as well as convey other information within the patterning. It does have a
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Pika is Smartphone Bot That Helps Kids Explore the World with a Camera

Pika is a new bot friend that “explores the world” with children through the use of a smartphone camera. The concept combines the camera with computer vision and augmented reality. Pika “learns” through a series of games that allow children to teach it various skills. For example, Pika might ask a child to teach it about primary colors. So, the user would then go and capture images of the target colors with the camera.
“The Pika colors game sends children on a color spotting adventure, allowing the whole world to be an open playground to be explored via the camera,”
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Photo Enhancement is Starting to Get Crazy

As the worlds of artificial intelligence and digital photography collide, we’re starting to see some mind-blowing technology emerge. The latest research in turning low-resolution photos into high-definition photos may drop your jaws — it’s starting to cross into the realm of sci-fi. What you see above isn’t a mockup of what these enhancement technologies may one day do: it’s an actual example of an AI-powered enhancement done by a new algorithm called EnhanceNet-PAT developed by scientists over at the Max Planck Institute for Intelligent Systems in Tübingen. The example started with this original photo of a bird: The scientists took
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This Website Uses AI to Enhance Low-Res Photos, CSI-Style

Let’s Enhance is a new free website that uses neural networks to upscale your photos in a way Photoshop can’t. It magically boosts and enhances your photo resolution like something straight out of CSI. The service is designed to be minimalist and extremely easy to use. The homepage invites you to drag and drop a photo into the center (once you do, you’ll be asked to create a free account): Once it receives your photo, the neural network goes to work, upscaling your photo by 4x, removing JPEG artifacts, and “hallucinating” missing details and textures into your upscale photo to
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Apple Acquires Camera Sensor Startup Behind QuantumFilm: Report

Apple has quietly acquired Invisage, the camera sensor startup company behind QuantumFilm, according to a new report. Image Sensors World reports that Apple closed a deal to acquire InVisage back in July 2017, and that some of the employees of InVisage have joined Apple while others were let go. We first covered InVisage back in 2010, when the California-based startup announced QuantumFilm, a new image sensor technology that was touted as being 4 times more sensitive than traditional camera sensors. The sensor uses a layer of semiconductor material on top of the traditional silicon sensor, using “quantum dots”
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This Neural Network Enhances Phone Photos to ‘DSLR-Quality’

Want to turn your smartphone snapshots into DSLR-quality photos? A group of scientists in Switzerland is trying to help make that possible. They’ve created a neural network that aims to automatically enhance low-quality phone snapshots into “DSLR-quality photos.” The research group at ETH Zurich detailed their new artificial intelligence photo enhancer in a paper titled “WESPE: Weakly Supervised Photo Enhancer for Digital Cameras.” “Low-end and compact mobile cameras demonstrate limited photo quality mainly due to space, hardware and budget constraints,” the scientists write. “We propose a deep learning solution that translates photos taken by cameras with limited
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iOS Apps Can Secretly Shoot Photos if Given Camera Permissions

Have you ever considered that your iPhone might be watching you? Felix Krause, a developer at Google, says he has found that iPhone apps could theoretically spy on you if given camera permissions. With an app published on GitHub, Krause illustrated how it’s possible for a malicious app to photograph you at its leisure without you knowing. Granted basic camera permissions, such an app could use either front or rear cameras to capture images and video “behind the scenes” when the app is loaded. You wouldn’t necessarily see notifications to say that photos are being taken either,
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‘Computational Zoom’ Lets You Remix Focal Lengths for Impossible Photos

Traditional photography involves choosing a focal length and position before snapping a shot. A new technology called “computational zoom” will allow photographers to remix those two factors afterward to create not only new compositions, but physically impossible ones. The UCSB Current reports that the project is being worked on by researchers at NVIDIA and UCSB. Here’s a 5-minute video that introduces and explains “computational zoom”:
Here’s a short explanation of how it works. When composing a photo, your focal length and position can drastically alter what the resulting image features. In an example given by researchers, photographing a
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iPhone Cameras May Soon Get Smarter with ‘SmartCam’ Scene Recognition

It seems the iPhone camera is about to get a whole lot smarter. A leaked internal version of iOS 11 has revealed that there’s a new feature coming to iPhones called “SmartCam.” It seems to be a way for the camera to automatically optimize your shot based on what it sees you taking a photo of. SlashGear reports that iOS developer Guilherme Rambo‏ spotted the SmartCam references when an internal version of iOS 11.0.2 meant for HomePod test units was sent out to outside developers.

This New AI Can Retouch Your Photos Before You Snap Them

What if your camera could professionally retouch your photos… before you even shoot them? That’s what researchers at Google and MIT are currently working on. MIT News reports that this week at the Siggraph digital graphics conference, Google and MIT scientists will be showing off a new system that can automatically retouch photos in the style of a professional photographer in real-time. Just as apps like Instagram can show you a real-time preview of what a scene looks like with a particular filter, the new AI system can show you a custom retouched version of any scene as you point
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A Detailed Look At How a DSLR Shutter Works

Have you ever wondered how the shutter of a DSLR works? This oddly satisfying 1.5-minute video from Chris Marquardt examines a shutter mechanism that has been extracted from a Nikon D500. The concept is pretty simple. There are two curtains, which are both spring-loaded and held in place by electromagnets. When you release the shutter, the mirror flips up and the two curtains are cocked, covering the camera’s sensor. The first curtain’s electromagnet then releases it so it swings open and exposes the sensor, allowing light in. The sensor stays exposed for the shutter length, and then the second
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A Detailed Look At How a DSLR Shutter Works

Have you ever wondered how the shutter of a DSLR works? This oddly satisfying 1.5-minute video from Chris Marquardt examines a shutter mechanism that has been extracted from a Nikon D500. The concept is pretty simple. There are two curtains, which are both spring-loaded and held in place by electromagnets. When you release the shutter, the mirror flips up and the two curtains are cocked, covering the camera’s sensor. The first curtain’s electromagnet then releases it so it swings open and exposes the sensor, allowing light in. The sensor stays exposed for the shutter length, and then the second
Continue reading "A Detailed Look At How a DSLR Shutter Works"

A Detailed Look At How a DSLR Shutter Works

Have you ever wondered how the shutter of a DSLR works? This oddly satisfying 1.5-minute video from Chris Marquardt examines a shutter mechanism that has been extracted from a Nikon D500. The concept is pretty simple. There are two curtains, which are both spring-loaded and held in place by electromagnets. When you release the shutter, the mirror flips up and the two curtains are cocked, covering the camera’s sensor. The first curtain’s electromagnet then releases it so it swings open and exposes the sensor, allowing light in. The sensor stays exposed for the shutter length, and then the second
Continue reading "A Detailed Look At How a DSLR Shutter Works"

A Detailed Look At How a DSLR Shutter Works

Have you ever wondered how the shutter of a DSLR works? This oddly satisfying 1.5-minute video from Chris Marquardt examines a shutter mechanism that has been extracted from a Nikon D500. The concept is pretty simple. There are two curtains, which are both spring-loaded and held in place by electromagnets. When you release the shutter, the mirror flips up and the two curtains are cocked, covering the camera’s sensor. The first curtain’s electromagnet then releases it so it swings open and exposes the sensor, allowing light in. The sensor stays exposed for the shutter length, and then the second
Continue reading "A Detailed Look At How a DSLR Shutter Works"

Countering Stryker’s Punch: Filling the Black Hole with Photoshop and GIMP

The visual record left behind by the United States Farm Security Administration (FSA) photographers has, according to New York Times critic Charles Hagen, come to “represent one of the most ambitious attempts ever made to depict a society in photographs (Hagen, 1985).” Leading the FSA’s Historical Section was Roy Stryker, a Columbia-trained economist. Though Stryker was not a photographer himself, he understood the power that images could have in economic argument and the general sway of ideas. In fact, New Deal propaganda on the plight and needed social assistance for the rural impoverished was one of the Historical Section’s
Continue reading "Countering Stryker’s Punch: Filling the Black Hole with Photoshop and GIMP"

Countering Stryker’s Punch: Filling the Black Hole with Photoshop and GIMP

The visual record left behind by the United States Farm Security Administration (FSA) photographers has, according to New York Times critic Charles Hagen, come to “represent one of the most ambitious attempts ever made to depict a society in photographs (Hagen, 1985).” Leading the FSA’s Historical Section was Roy Stryker, a Columbia-trained economist. Though Stryker was not a photographer himself, he understood the power that images could have in economic argument and the general sway of ideas. In fact, New Deal propaganda on the plight and needed social assistance for the rural impoverished was one of the Historical Section’s
Continue reading "Countering Stryker’s Punch: Filling the Black Hole with Photoshop and GIMP"

Countering Stryker’s Punch: Filling the Black Hole with Photoshop and GIMP

The visual record left behind by the United States Farm Security Administration (FSA) photographers has, according to New York Times critic Charles Hagen, come to “represent one of the most ambitious attempts ever made to depict a society in photographs (Hagen, 1985).” Leading the FSA’s Historical Section was Roy Stryker, a Columbia-trained economist. Though Stryker was not a photographer himself, he understood the power that images could have in economic argument and the general sway of ideas. In fact, New Deal propaganda on the plight and needed social assistance for the rural impoverished was one of the Historical Section’s
Continue reading "Countering Stryker’s Punch: Filling the Black Hole with Photoshop and GIMP"