Rajiv Laroia

Co-founder and CTO of Light, reimagining photography

THIS CHAT HAPPENED ON December 14, 2015

Discussion

Rajiv Laroia@drrajivlaroia · CTO & Co-Founder of Light
Hi, I’m Rajiv Laroia, co-founder and CTO of Light, makers of the L16 multi-aperture computational camera. I previously founded and served as CTO of Flarion Technologies, which developed the base technology for LTE before being acquired by Qualcomm in 2006. Prior to Flarion, I held R&D leadership roles in Lucent Technologies Bell Labs. I hold a Ph.D. and Master's degree from the University of Maryland, College Park, and a Bachelor's degree from the Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi, all in electrical engineering.
Clyde@cgrapa
@drrajivlaroia Since there is no hotshoe on the L16, would it be possible to sync to an external flash via WiFi or Bluetooth?
Rajiv Laroia@drrajivlaroia · CTO & Co-Founder of Light
@cgrapa Syncing to external flash will make sense only for exposures greater than 1/40th of a second. We will look into enabling this through bluetooth.
adam@adam_i · Adam I
Thanks for answering questions. I've pre-ordered. My few are: -There is no removable memory. This worries me as these images are likely very big files. Any plans to add this feature? -Same for removable battery. This makes some kinds of travel very hard. Any plans to add this feature? Do either of the above concern you? -Here's an easy one. Is there a anchor of some kind for a wrist strap? In the preview images and videos no one is ever wearing a strap. This is a pretty expensive product to just walk around free wheeling it.
Rajiv Laroia@drrajivlaroia · CTO & Co-Founder of Light
@adam_i As for memory, there is currently 128G of non volatile memory. We are looking to see if it makes sense to add a slot for removable memory, but we are not sure at this point. However there is a usb interface and people can attach external usb memory to the device. As for the battery, we are also going to be offering a removable grip with a secondary battery that doubles the battery life. As a pre-order customer you'll get a complementary battery/grip.
Armando Heredia@gunshotlead
In an interview series with ProLost, you referred to use of wide open aperture as "corner cases." But it's a very strong likelihood that buyers (including) myself will want to shoot at this setting. Since there is no aperture priority per previous interviews, by default the camera is shooting at wide-open is it not? When do you plan on having sample photos for this scenario, and for varying the DoF, will we have to download the photo and adjust in your post-process software?
Rajiv Laroia@drrajivlaroia · CTO & Co-Founder of Light
@gunshotlead We'll be releasing more sample photos soon that have shallow depth of field. Look for these in early 2016.
Armando Heredia@gunshotlead
What is the strategy for post-process? Is your file going to be proprietary format? Will the end user need standalone software to process? Are there plans to integrate with COTS editors and which? What can the end user do offline in the editor (refocus, adjust DoF, HDR, other)? Can any post-process be done in-camera and what is the plan to integrate with Social Media apps? Will the apps reside directly on the camera? Is there a plan to integrate 4G/LTE connectivity or are we limited to WiFi/Tethering?
Rajiv Laroia@drrajivlaroia · CTO & Co-Founder of Light
@gunshotlead Yes, there is plan for integration with COTS editors. We will have our own software which will take the multiple images from the camera and combine them into a single image. We will also consider producing plug ins for COTS editors to do this.
Lejla Bajgoric@lejlahunts · Intern, Product Hunt
Thanks for being here Rajiv! What would you say is your biggest accomplishment, outside of professional developments?
Rajiv Laroia@drrajivlaroia · CTO & Co-Founder of Light
@lejlahunts My amazing family. I have four kids :)
Not sure what a COTS editor is, but I would love a better understanding of the post-process. So you'll have files that can be downloaded from the camera? Are these RAW files? What type of file format? Would one be able to work on these in Photoshop or Lightroom? Thanks.
Rajiv Laroia@drrajivlaroia · CTO & Co-Founder of Light
@christark The data from our camera contains 10 different images, and our software or plug-in is required to combine images into a single image. This can then be exported in multiple formats (PNG, JPG, TIFF, DNG, etc...) for editing in commercially-available editors like Photoshop and others.
Rajiv Laroia@drrajivlaroia · CTO & Co-Founder of Light
Thanks for all of the great questions! We look forward to sharing more in 2016! A quick reminder that today is the last day to pre-order with our $200 off holiday promotion and receive a special gift box to put under the tree. Use promo code: NOTFRUITCAKE and visit light.co/gift for more information.
Vivek Gani@vivekgani · workin on @thimbleup (a mac plugin)
Pretty excited about this camera, already sold my slr and preordered this! Have a few questions: - Is long term (several minutes) exposure possible for night sky / light painting photos? - How well does the stitching work with motion photography shots (e.g. a photographing a vehicle while moving in another vehicle) ? - Will there be a panorama feature? - During the October launch, there was a photo of a sunset dinner scene on the light.co's image gallery that was later removed. Why was this photo removed from the gallery?
J and J Studio@jandjstudio · DOP J and J studio
@vivekgani already sold your slr? You know this isnt out until fall next year right?
Rajiv Laroia@drrajivlaroia · CTO & Co-Founder of Light
@vivekgani Great! Thanks for your support :) We are working to enable long exposures. For very long exposures we may need some cooperation from the photographer to physically block light from entering the camera while we take a second exposure. Stitching for motion photography shots works well. There are no added undesirable effects. The smallest focal length that we support is 35mm for the L16. Right now there's no plan for a panorama feature, but we're hoping to change that soon... not sure about the sunset dinner photo... I'll have to ask our marketing team ;)
Vivek Gani@vivekgani · workin on @thimbleup (a mac plugin)
@jandjstudio @vivekgani Yeah, I know it isn't out till next fall. Was using my old slr less and less though since it was a pain to pack for my main needs (travel/hiking/snowboarding).
Armando Heredia@gunshotlead
Can you give more details on the Autofocus capabilities? Will there be face detection? Is it contrast or phase detect? How many points? How does it work if the user wants to automatically track a subject across the screen? Or override for single point?
Rajiv Laroia@drrajivlaroia · CTO & Co-Founder of Light
@gunshotlead It's a hybrid auto-focus. Since the mirror isn't blocking the sensor, the entire sensor can be used for auto-focus points. The first phase of auto focus involves depth estimation by parallax. And then we refine by contrast feedback.
Armando Heredia@gunshotlead
Can you expand on the metering used? Will the user have options for multi-segment, CW, and spot? How will that work in conjunction with the HDR?
Rajiv Laroia@drrajivlaroia · CTO & Co-Founder of Light
@gunshotlead Since we're taking 10 shots, which can be metered separately, it doesn't make sense to give that much control to the end user. However, the user can specify normal metering modes as they are used to with traditional cameras. We can adjust the exposure of different cameras differently, and we have simultaneous HDR which the camera will control.
Paul Greenstone@paulgreenstone · Social media guy/photographer/writer
@drrajivlaroia As a professional photographer (weddings/family events etc) who ALSO does a lot of nature/wildlife photography in addition to doing a lot of traveling photography that includes shooting my 6 year old son who is quite the adventurer, I'm hoping the L16 will be a high end still camera AND "GoPro" type device that ALSO happens to shoot 4K video... What type of cases will you provide and/ or wrist straps to ensure safety of my L16!? Also, will there be a Light Company storage/editing program for desktop/laptop and/or can you do post on camera itself? Oh and I'd totally be open to you sending me a demo to shoot with until you ship the one I preordered on the 1st day you could pre order the L16!!! Thanks! Paul Greenstone
Rajiv Laroia@drrajivlaroia · CTO & Co-Founder of Light
@paulgreenstone Hi Paul - We are really excited to be working with some great partners on offering a wide selection of cases for many different situations. There will surely be something to your liking :) We will definitely have a program for desktop/laptop to process the captured images. Some amount of editing will be possible on the device. We want people to follow the workflow that they're accustomed to, and will also try to provide plugins for the COTS editors that they're used to.
J and J Studio@jandjstudio · DOP J and J studio
@drrajivlaroia Waiting almost a year for a pre order is pretty concerning. Despite that I have preordered one. My big concern and question is, when will models be available for real world testing? I my self am anxious to see real photographers review the cameras abilities. I honestly don't know if I have that much patience to wait until fall of 2016....
Rajiv Laroia@drrajivlaroia · CTO & Co-Founder of Light
@jandjstudio Waiting is hard for us too :) The reason we took pre-orders, rather than waiting until the finished product was complete, was to help us establish demand and our supply chain. We expect to have field-ready prototypes next spring, and will provide several opportunities for people to try and test them out at some trade shows and other events.
Emily Hodgins@ems_hodge · Community and Marketing, Product Hunt
@drrajivlaroia thanks for joining us today. During your career to date, what is the best piece of advice you've ever been given? Flip side - what's the worst?
Rajiv Laroia@drrajivlaroia · CTO & Co-Founder of Light
@ems_hodge Best - A company is only as good as it's people. So hire the best :) Worst - Money is the only motivator.
Theoharis Dimarhos@theo_dimarhos · Marketing+Biz Dev at AngelouEconomics
HI! Based on your tech experience, how would you change online schools/education? What are the missing components that could make them grow exponentially?
Rajiv Laroia@drrajivlaroia · CTO & Co-Founder of Light
@theo_dimarhos I don't think we've harvested the power of technology to reduce the cost of education yet. A college education today is unaffordable for middle class American parents. It costs nearly a quarter of a million dollars, on average, for 4-year college education of a single child. I think all schools should look at supplementing their curriculums with online course work to make college education more affordable for more people. For example, why not record lectures from the best teachers at the best schools and make them available for everyone? Money should not be the deciding factor on whether someone gets to learn or not.
@drrajivlaroia Thanks for taking time to answer questions Rajiv. I’m very excited about the L16 and pre-ordered in October. It may be too early to answer, but will it be possible to update the internal software should the need arise?
Rajiv Laroia@drrajivlaroia · CTO & Co-Founder of Light
@rbrook51 Yes. We'll have over-the-air upgrades as new software becomes available.
Schubidu Quartet@schubidu4 · Co-Founder The Schubidu Quartet
You said earlier in your answer to @adam_i that you will be able to attach external usb memory. Does that mean i can connect an external drive directly to the camera and copy all the data from the camera to the drive without using a pc? I preordered a few weeks ago because I am looking for a good substitute for my dslr while travelling. Sometimes I'm on the road for a month or so and take a few thousand photos during that time.
Rajiv Laroia@drrajivlaroia · CTO & Co-Founder of Light
@schubidu4 Thanks for your question. Yes, our current plan is to enable users to connect and download to a usb drive, however we're still in prototype. We'll announce the full specs in the spring.
Schubidu Quartet@schubidu4 · Co-Founder The Schubidu Quartet
@drrajivlaroia awesome, thanks!
Paul Greenstone@paulgreenstone · Social media guy/photographer/writer
when can we see more samples of L16 photos/videos on your site?
Rajiv Laroia@drrajivlaroia · CTO & Co-Founder of Light
Good question! I'll have to ask our marketing team ;) We are working on shooting some more photos which will better show off the capabilities of the L16.
Caleb@caleb995
In the talk you gave at Stanford you talked about the advantages of a global shutter on the image sensors. Are the L16 cameras camera modules going to have global shutters?