What the Tech?! Lytro’s Illum Camera



Lytro Illumn;
A mirrorless camera that can refocus photos after they’re taken. The Illum is built using a light field sensor, which captures direction of light rays in addition to the basic color and intensity of traditional cameras. This allows the camera to render photos into focus after the image has been captured. It can also created 3D images or graphical animations as used in virtual reality.

The Illum is Lytro’s second attempt to expose the world to light field technology; in 2012, it released a point-and-shoot camera that didn’t catch on. Lytro’s mission as they bring Illum to the market is to change the way people think about images. The Illum is built with very little glass and no mirror — this basically means it isn’t a camera, in the traditional sense. Instead, it’s a computer-like collector of data that later creates images from the information it gathers when you hit the “shutter” button. This data is sent to a companion app, where you can refocus, shift, and create variations on one shot. Needless to say, this camera isn’t built for selfies.

The camera will run an expensive $1,500 to purchase, but the hardware is only the first step in what Lytro wants to do with the technology built into Illum (so, it’s okay to hold off for now). The team behind the light field camera wants to install the technology into “anything with a lens and a sensor,” creating instantly interactive images of security cameras or MRIs, for example. They also imagine a cheaper Hollywood, where instead of shooting with 5 cameras in expensive 3D, a filmmaker can shoot with one and choose focus later. Someday, the technology built into the Illum will probably grace our tablets and smartphones, putting professional digital photography tools into the palm of an amateur hand.

Play around with images from the Lytro Illum within this in-depth review from The Verge.

3 Yapps for Earth Day

Happy Earth Day


Happy Earth Day! Every April 22, we Earthlings celebrate this ecosystem in which we live by cultivating soils, planting trees, uber-recycling and basking in the pleasantries of nature.

A few of our Yappers are celebrating today and year-round with sustainability programs. More

Our Yappie Bracket Champion is…

After three rounds of play, our Yappie Bracket Challenge has a champion: Kentucky YMCA Youth Association!

They brought together their incredible youth to contribute to their Yapp, growing their followers by more than 1,000. Look for a feature on the awesome organization early next week.


Thanks to all of our participants, their followers and everyone who voted. All 8 Yappers made our first foray into March (and April) Madness exceptional!

What the Tech?! OpenSSL

The most popular open-source library used to implement secure encryptions for websites, e-mail servers and applications. SSL stands for ‘Secure Sockets Layer’, and OpenSSL simply means that anyone with the means can contribute to

You’ve likely heard a lot about OpenSSL lately because of Heartbleed, the security issue that was reported last week. And you’ve probably been told to change your password on every site you care about (if you haven’t, you should). An error was added into the OpenSSL code that allowed anyone who knew how to read chunks of memory and retrieve extensive security information (like passwords and cookies) that are usually protected by encryption. The vulnerability affected about 500,000 secure sites running OpenSSL, which is about 66% of the Internet.

The bug (called Heartbleed because it occurred in the heartbeat extension within the code base) was present for two years before being discovered and patched last week. If you’re running Android on your mobile phone, you can use the Heartbleed Detector app to tell if your information has been compromised. Apple doesn’t use OpenSSL on any of it’s operating systems.

Now that you’ve got a grip on the news story, go change your passwords.


A Note About “Heartbleed”

Yesterday, it was reported that a large security bug was found and is being repaired. You can read more about it from the BBC here.

We are aware of the OpenSSL “Heartbleed” vulnerability and have worked with our hosting vendor to upgrade OpenSSL to an unaffected version. We have rekeyed, reissued, and updated our certificates, as well as updated relevant passwords.

In layman’s terms, we think we’re in the clear. But, while we have no reason to believe that any private information was accessed via this vulnerability, we would recommend that Yapp users update their password as a precaution.

-The Yapp Team