Artificial Intelligence Versus Processing Power
Some modern advancements related to camera design have made me wonder if there will be revolutions in photography. Firstly, there might be a major, updated, advance in the field of artificial intelligence, or AI. One such advance could lead to a possibly upcoming ability of camera processors to become much more efficient, because of AI, and such a ability can make large cameras such as SLRs or Mirrorless obsolete, at least in theory. An increase in the efficiency and therefore speed of in-camera processors might not only mean increases such as frame rates, video bokeh, and better jpeg rendition. There could also be increases in the amount of images that can be taken in a given time, which means that image stacking algorithms that can be built into a camera can process more images per second, and tasks such as focus stacking or HDR can be more easily achieved. Once a camera company can focus their effort on such features, then small devices such as cell phones & compact cameras might be able to produce image quality at the level of what larger sensors found in Mirrorless and SLR cameras can. Such a feature though is usually useful for scenes in which nothing moves, but at least in theory it might be able to work if the sequence of required photos needed is fast enough.
New Sensor Technology
Shortly before the time of this writing, I received interesting news from the world of Panasonic. Panasonic has decided to work on what’s known as an Organic sensor, and is supposed to become available in new cameras sometime around the year 2021, perhaps a little later. Such a sensor can supposedly be comprised of a global shutter, which means that in video mode especially, specific types of moving objects such as fan blades and vertical lines moving horizontally won’t become distorted, which is the major downfall particularly of a rolling shutter. Also, the new sensor will be able to have an infinite ND filter, an electronic one, the value of which can essentially be dialed in at an infinite amount of steps. It’s also likely for such sensors to become a part of Fujifilm cameras as well. Also, for some time, there has been the idea of curved sensors. The reason for curved sensors is so that the light entering a lens can fall on a sensor in a way as to avoid any distortion of light, but for only some time it has been available to work solely using a lens with single focal length, also known as a prime lens. In addition to new sensors, there has also been the idea of getting rid of the lens in what’s known as a lensless camera, that of which I have very little knowledge of. In my opinion, a lensless camera is probably the most intriguing of all of these inventions, matched by or at least closely matched by the idea of an Organic Sensor. Despite all of these ideas possibly becoming real in the near future, user experience is likely to still be a major factor in how well a photographer does. The photographer alone is already a major influence on the outcome of how well the photographic process comes along, generally more important then the gear used, but perhaps emerging technologies might be able to turn the process in favor of technology?