Researchers at Adelaide University in Australia have developed a new way for cameras to perform better in cases of extreme light and dark, turning to the way a fly sees for inspiration. The researchers first monitored the activity of fly brain cells to see how they processed image information, finding that the little critters were able to extract a great deal of detail even in dark areas of a scene. They then reproduced the effect themselves by fine tuning the brightness of an image down to the individual pixel level, adjusting each pixel based on the amount of light it receives. That's opposed to a regular camera, which uses a single brightness setting for an entire image, resulting in a loss of detail in dark areas of a high contrast picture. Obviously, one of the main applications the researchers see for the technology is in surveillance, although it's apparently too costly to be practical for anything else besides military applications. Well, that's what they said about Darpanet too, and look where we are today...

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Researchers develop "fly-vision" to brighten dark videos