Researchers at MIT working at "the intersection of vision and graphics" have created a computer program that offers its users a stunning new way of looking at the world. The intriguing technique, which uses an algorithm that can amplify both movement and color, can be used to monitor everthing from breathing in a sleeping infant, to the pulse in a hospital patient. Its creators, led by computer scientist William Freeman, call it "Eulerian Video Magnification," and it's nothing short of stunning to watch in action.
Says Freeman in the above video:
Now you can see all sorts of things. you can see how fast [a demonstration hospital patient, Steve's] heart's beating [in his face]. You can also see a spatial pattern of when the blood goes where, on his face. And, we're hoping, that this will be a useful diagnostic for medical doctors. If Steve took his shirt off, we could look for asymmetries for when the blood flows where on his body and perhaps that could be diagnostic for disease.
Applications don't stop there. Magnification could make it easier to monitor the vital signs of neonatal infants while still handling them as little as possible.
"Once we amplify it and show what's there, there's like a whole new world — all sorts of things you can look at."
Best of all? They've posted the source code online. It's free to use for non-commercial purposes.
Read more at the New York Times.