Real life in live cam

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Perhaps a few seconds of notice could save lives," said study lead author Katie Bouman, an imaging scientist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory.[Mind-Controlled Cats?!

6 Incredible Spy Technologies That Are Real] "Search and rescue, or helping to understand what is going on behind a wall in a hostage situation, are also potential applications," Bouman added.

"This allows us to use common consumer cameras and not specialized equipment to see around corners." The new system, known as Corner Cameras, analyzes light that is reflected off objects hidden around corners and that falls on the ground within the line of sight of the camera.

This light is called the "penumbra." The system analyzes this penumbra over several seconds, stitching together dozens of distinct images, according to the study.

The researchers are now focused on getting the system to work first on a moving wheelchair and eventually on a moving car, she said.

Future research will also aim to make Corner Cameras work in a variety of lighting situations, or in changing lighting conditions, such as when clouds overhead constantly move in front of the sun.

However, Corner Cameras analyzes the data of a scene across dozens of images, so "the effect of the raindrops was essentially averaged out." One current limitation of Corner Cameras is that it requires a stationary camera that's held very steady.

"In many situations, such as in a collision-avoidance system on a car, you do not have the luxury of a stationary camera," Bouman said.

This futuristic-sounding tech could one day help vehicles see around blind corners, the researchers said.

"We may eventually be able to use this idea to alert drivers to pedestrians or cars that are about to dart out from behind buildings into a driver's path.

"Getting the system to work in these scenarios would open up the possibility of it being able to be used by a person with a handheld smartphone," Bouman said.

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