Archived posting to the Leica Users Group, 2004/10/01

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Subject: [Leica] Consider This...
From: jonathan at (Jonathan Borden)
Date: Fri Oct 1 10:20:41 2004
References: <> <016101c4a795$38499a90$4649c33e@eigenaarsgmw7j> <p05111000bd82e47241be@[]>

Karen Nakamura wrote: 

> p.s. I can believe the program can learn to compensate for some 
> barrel/pincushion type distortion as well as for some chromatic 
> aberration error, but it really can't make something out of nothing. 
> Those movies where the FBI/NSA/NASA/JPL technicians are able to turn a 
> fuzzy face into something so sharp you can see Robert DeNiro's warts 
> are ... well.. science fiction.

Well that's not entirely science fiction ... for an interesting read 
find the book entitled "The Secret Empire" by Taubman. It chronicles 
some of the development behind the U2 and later satellites. It turns out 
that Harry Land (an old acquaintance of mine btw) was instrumental in 
sheparding the development of some pretty amazing photographic 
technologies. People who knew Harry very well knew that he had used to 
go off for some cloak and dagger meetings but he tended to be gandiose 
and we never knew the real extent of his involvement until some of it 
began to be declassified many years later.

In the 1980s we used to do our digital capture and manipulation work 
using a high end video camera and an "Itek" capture card --- really 
excellent product --- well it turns out that "Itek" was funded by the 
CIA "venture capital" arm... in any case one day I was playing around 
with some edge enhancement routines trying to develop some automatic 
pattern recognition algorithms for some digital pathology work I was 
doing... and all of a sudden from the blur that was in some blob inside 
the nucleus of a piece of human brain, I saw some coiled structures 
(this is all with light microscopy btw) ... at the time I didn't know 
what to make of it, and show the loops to my thesis advisor -- well to 
make a long story short(er) after some more work had been done to verify 
this, it turns out that we were imaging human DNA supercoils which are 
supposedly too small to be imaged by visible light.

But let's get this straight ... we are talking about world class 
(Leitz/Zeiss etc) microscope lenses and world class ultraexpensive 
satellite and aerial camera lenses -- digital enhancement techniques do 
not *replace* high quality lenses, rather may take off when they have 
reached their limits.


In reply to: Message from telyt at (Douglas Herr) ([Leica] Consider This...)
Message from s.jessurun95 at (animal) ([Leica] Consider This...)
Message from mail at (Karen Nakamura) ([Leica] Consider This...)