<p>Q&A with designer Mimi Zou who created an intelligent little camera that records exactly what you see.</p>
Never worry about adjusting ISO, shutter speed, or aperture when taking pictures again because Iris, a new concept camera from American product designer Mimi Zou, takes pictures of exactly what you see through your eyes. To capture an image, all you have to do is focus on an object through the lens-shaped camera and blink twice. Since her recent graduation from the Royal College of Art in London, Zou’s worked for companies including IDEO, frog design and NASA before taking her expertise in product design to a mechanical engineering level.
We caught up with Zou to talk about about how and what she packed into this sleek camera.
The Creators Project: What kind of technology did you use to make Iris?
Mimi Zou: IRIS is a biometrics-enabled camera controlled by your eye. It understands who you are by looking at your iris signature, and lets you capture exactly what you see by tracking your eye. The technologies involved in the development of Iris include iris recognition, validation, eye tracking, image processing, machine learning, and cloud computing.
How does it work?
It recognizes the unique iris signature of registered users, adapts their preferences, and looks to the eye to know how and when to capture what they see. Overtime, Iris learns about the behavior of its users and becomes more intelligent in providing the most beneficial photo experience.
What was the most difficult part of Iris’ development?
Iris is an intuitive and minimalist camera that’s actually packed with performance and technology. The greatest challenge in Iris’ development was to make sure all the features and technologies complemented each other in order to create the best user experience, as well as being enjoyable to use and reliable over time.
Is Iris still a concept? Will we be able to buy and use Iris to take pictures sometime in the near future?
A working prototype of Iris has been developed, and it’s being refined while pending additional support. Since it was first created, there has been an amazing amount of interest, and I’m excited to share the experience of Iris with them! It is quite a difficult journey to commercialize a consumer electronic product from concept, but with their support, I hope to do everything I can to bring it to the world.
Photos courtesy of Mimi Zou.