Only a lucky few have ever seen what Earth looks like from space, with human impacts all but invisible and the blackness of space just beyond the horizon. Soon, everyone will have a view, via the Internet and a pair of cameras flying on the International Space Station.
Nikon's been playing catch-up ever since they introduced the first DSLR capable of shooting HD video along with photos; a flurry of HD models from rival Canon have consistently bested Nikon's in terms of features in price. But with the freshly-announced D3100, Nikon may have found a new secret sauce: 1080p with auto focus.
It wasn't that long ago that the T1i first brought 1080p video to an entry-level digital SLR--albeit at a pokey 20 frames per second. Today, Canon's latest digital Rebel, the T2i borrows the video capabilities of the far more advanced 7D in a sub-$1,000 package.
Less than a week after Nikon wowed with its D3S, with previously unseen light sensitivity up to ISO 102,400, Canon has unveiled their own night-vision pro DSLR, the 1D Mark IV. But where the D3S falls short in the video department, the 1D Mark IV pushes things forward.
In the continuing saga of curious humans sending high-altitude balloons to the edge of space with cameras strapped to them, a group hailing from Edmonton have one-upped those thrifty MIT kids and their $150 space photo rig, albeit at greater expense: their Canon Vixia HD camcorder sent up on a hydrogen balloon has captured what is probably the world's first amateur HD video from near-space.
Japan's Kaguya lunar surveyor craft has sent back fresh HD clips as its orbit slowly degrades, bringing it closer than ever to the surface. In two days it will crash-land, bringing its mission to an end, but until then, it's keeping the ultra-crisp, almost surreal lunar footage coming.
Five amazing, clean technologies that will set us free, in this month's energy-focused issue. Also: how to build a better bomb detector, the robotic toys that are raising your children, a human catapult, the world's smallest arcade, and much more.