Topography photography


My buddy John “Storz” Storozuk gave me a Kinect-like distance-sensing camera a few weeks back. In his extensive travels of the tech world, many bits of gear get caught in Storz’s net and happily, knowing my interests in photography+making, he passed this Intel RealSense camera on to me.

Calder and I had been wrestling with the developer examples and that was proving challenging on Windows 8.1, possibly due to permissions or code signing issues. Messing around with just accessing the “regular” visible light camera on this rig, I serendipitously discovered this mode that gives me topographic JPEGs. Wicked! Like a topographical map based on… an IR laser projector-receiver pair mashed up with a colour camera.

Now the maker and photographer inside me must fight it out to determine what happens first: explore the photographic potential or the 3D user interface possibilities? Click through for a few more pics…


This is a USB 3.0 device (look for the blue ports on your computers) and comes complete with the biggest integrated heatsink I’ve ever seen on a peripheral. According to this 2014 slide deck from Intel, the hole on the left is the IR laser projector, the hole on the right is the IR receiver/camera, and the middle is a standard colour digital camera. Happily, it has a 1/4”-20 tripod mount on the bottom.


Ok, but first let me take a topographic selfie. My hair looks like broccoli.


Would you like a green apple?




Apologies to Edvard Munch: The Scream.

Thanks Storz. Photography!


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One Response to Topography photography

  1. James Nye says:

    Mind-blowing as always. Thanks Darin, for another interesting post that will keep me up all night pondering…

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