Shooting full panoramas is easy with bendable Flexcam camera
posted Monday, August 19, 2013 at 4:29 PM EDT
Shooting panoramas has probably never been easier. Many smartphones and consumer point-and-shoots include incredibly simple tools for stitching together a series of images into a broad panorama. But a concept camera from Queen's University's Human Media Lab would do that one better, using a flexible OLED to make a camera that can be bent to take the exact framing you want from a photo.
Dubbed the FlexCam, this gadget has an array of three lenses on one side, and the flexible OLED on the other. As the user bends the camera outwards, the field of view expands between the lenses, allowing you to dynamically change how wide you would want the panorama to be. As the Media Lab explains it:
"Integrated bend sensors measure the amount of flexion in the display. The degree of flexion is used as input to software, which dynamically stitches images from the camera array and adjusts viewfinder size to reflect the virtual camera's FOV"
The concept obviously isn't perfect, and the results don't seem to offer much more than what you can do in a normal camera right now. But what's exciting about this is its potential. Flexible OLEDs and circuitry like this could mean cameras that are radically different shapes than the ones we're used to. Flexing to change field of view is so unlike how modern cameras work, that it's a completely radical take on interacting with a camera. And if flexible OLEDs are high enough quality, just think of how else your camera might be used with one in place!