Heartography gets the picture when pulses are racing

Meet Grizzler, the world's first doggie photographer.
Date:24 June 2015 Tags:, ,

What if you could let your emotions decide on the perfect moment to take a picture, without human intervention?

From panoramas to selfies, we’re a world of picture-takers – and the rise of the cellphone camera has put that ability in virtually every pocket on the planet. But all of that still entails some thought process and action on the part of the user (though to judge by some selfies, thought wasn’t necessarily part of the process).

But what if you could let your emotions decide on the perfect moment to take a picture, without human intervention? A picture, to put it another way, taken straight from the heart?

That’s the principle – literally – behind Nikon’s Heartography heart rate monitor with camera system. On the assumption that the heart rate goes up when we get excited by seeing something we like, it triggers the shutter when it senses a spike in heart rate above a certain threshold.

Here’s the thing: Heartography is perfect for those who are a all thumbs – or, for that matter, no thumbs – when it comes to pressing the shutter button on a smartphone. Meaning, Man’s best friend, in the form of guinea pig – er, dog – Grizzler. Since Grizzler’s portfolio went live in Nikon’s promotional video, he has been dubbed by some the world’s first “phodographer”. With a heart monitor belt around the neck and a camera hooked to a harness, talking to each other via Bluetooth, Grizzler went, well, doggy.  And given that dogs are creatures known to get quite excitable, particularly when confronted by, say, a cat, the image gallery is often unintentionally hilarious.

Should Heartography technology ever be put to human use, of course, we should point out that it’s not just excitement that gets the heart rate up: fear has the same effect. Fortunately, for those moments, there’s always the Delete button.