Sam Hasinoff is the 2008 recipient of the Alain Fournier Ph.D. Thesis Annual Award. His thesis, Variable Aperture Photography, completed at the University of Toronto under the supervision of Professor Kyros Kutulakos, makes several significant contributions to the field of computational photography. By combining multiple captures of the same scene with varying exposure, focus, and aperture settings – all taken by a single, conventional digital camera – Sam’s techniques are able to
- create a pixel-resolution depth map that works even for complicated images,
- allow the photographer to defer the application of several camera settings (e.g., depth-of-field) until
- reproduce an exposure with a synthesized depth-of-field in less time than a conventional single expo-
sure, and given time and
- depth-of-field constraints, find an optimal sequence of exposures.
The thesis is well-organized and well-written. Sam’s dedication to thoroughness and attention to both mathematical and experimental details are exemplary. In the coming years, this work is likely to have significant impact on camera design and photography in general.
Sam completed his B.Sc. at the University of British Columbia in 2000 and his M.Sc. at the University of Toronto in 2002 (also under Professor Kutulakos). He has received numerous scholarships from NSERC and other organizations and is currently an NSERC Postdoctoral Fellow at MIT.