SOURCE: Future Image

August 24, 2006 10:01 ET

Not Your Father's Camera Optics: Tomorrow's Lens Technology Will Be Demonstrated at the 6Sight Future of Imaging Executive Conference

SAN MATEO, CA -- (MARKET WIRE) -- August 24, 2006 -- Over the past ten years, photographic cameras have almost completely transitioned from silver halide film to electronic sensors. But the other key component -- the lens -- has remained largely unchanged... Until now. The cell-phone industry, with its huge demand for embedded cameras, is driving a broad set of new requirements for miniaturized, rugged, low-cost, low-power, high-performance lenses. As they come to market, the superior value proposition of those lenses will threaten to displace traditional optics in cameras of all types. As a result the business of designing and making lenses is undergoing its most fundamental upheaval since the Renaissance.

This revolution in lens design and capabilities will be featured at the upcoming 6Sight™ Future of Imaging conference. The latest and most promising innovations -- liquid lenses, specialized software-enhanced optics and more -- will be demonstrated live, followed by a discussion of their readiness for market, and respective pros and cons.

The leading innovators in optics and opto-mechanics will demonstrate their technologies in plenary sessions, some for the first time. They include: Artificial Muscle of Menlo Park, CA; dBlur of Herzeliya, Israel; DxO of Paris, France; IvenSense of Santa Clara, CA; New Scale Technologies of Victor, NY; OmniVision of Sunnyvale, CA; and Varioptic of Lyon, France.

These demonstrations will be followed by a discussion led by Future Image Senior Analyst Tony Henning, where attendees will hear a different perspective: Senior representatives of the firms who decide whether and when to adopt these new technologies -- such as cell-phone manufacturers, camera module assemblers, sensor developers, and carriers -- will evaluate the technologies presented, explain their requirements for transitioning, and describe how they approach the process.

Attendees will have further opportunities to examine the new lens technologies and to interact with their developers at the New Tech Fair, which takes place during the 6Sight gala dinner at the Monterey Bay Aquarium. The New Tech Fair will also feature the latest developments in imaging software and hardware from throughout the industry.

The technology show Into Tomorrow with Dave Graveline, which covers the latest in consumer electronics and technology, will broadcast from 6Sight and the New Tech Fair.

6Sight is hosted and produced by Future Image Inc. and co-hosted by the two leading imaging industry associations: PMA (Photo Marketing Association International) and I3A (International Imaging Industry Association). Corporate sponsors include such industry giants as Hewlett Packard, Microsoft, Sprint, Corel, and WebShots (a division of CNET) as well as emerging firms like Nethra Imaging and ShoZu.

"This combination of industry leading companies and high-profile new technology promises a very exciting opportunity for smaller companies to meet major players, and for the established leaders to preview new and exciting technologies that will change the imaging industry," said Joe Byrd, VP of Conferences for Future Image.

About 6Sight

6Sight (www.6Sight.com) is a two-day executive event focused on the explosive global spread of imaging technology, and its potential for exciting new opportunities to improve people's lives in the personal, work, and community spheres. It is hosted and organized by Future Image, Inc., publisher of The Future Image Report since 1993 and host of the Mobile Imaging Summit executive conferences, and co-hosted by the two leading industry organizations in imaging -- the International Imaging Industry Association (I3A) and the Photo Marketing Association International (PMA). The annual event brings together technologists, marketers, futurists, artists, educators, customers and members of the media for a program emphasizing innovative use cases, breakthrough technologies, and creativity. The inaugural 6Sight conference will be held on October 24 and 25, 2006 in Monterey, Calif. in conjunction with the 6th edition of the Mobile Imaging Summit conference. The event is supported by the world's leading photo and telecommunications associations including photokina, MIPC and the 3G Congress. For information about participating in 6Sight, please email Joe Byrd, Future Image's VP of Conferences & Alliances at JByrd@FutureImage.com.

About Future Image

San Mateo, CA-based Future Image Inc. (www.futureimage.com) is the leading independent center of expertise on the convergence of imaging, technology and business. Future Image hosts the 6Sight and Mobile Imaging Executive Summit conferences, and publishes two continuous information services, The Future Image Report which monitors the impact of new technologies on the imaging industry as a whole, and the Future Image MIR (Mobile Imaging Report) which focuses on camera-phones and the intersection of imaging and wireless communications. Future Image also underwrites and publishes primary research studies on the impact of emerging imaging-focused technologies or business trends, and provides consulting services to vendors, investors and large-scale users. Future Image is the official information and research partner of the International Imaging Association (I3A).

About the International Imaging Industry Association (I3A)

I3A is the leading global imaging industry association, driving growth of and setting standards for the photographic and information imaging markets. As the industry focal point, I3A offers a framework and environment where members can quickly find resources to solve critical issues and develop market solutions. Members of I3A work together to find common ground for advancing the industry and to enable better products and services for their customers.

I3A is an accredited Standards Developing Organization, serving as secretariat for the International Organization for Standardization Technical Committee 42 (ISO/TC42) on Photography, and as administrator for the USA Technical Advisory Group for this committee. Information about I3A can be found on the World Wide Web at www.i3a.org or by phone at 914-285-4933.

About PMA

For 81 years, PMA® has served as an international trade association for the changing needs of the expanding photo imaging industry with more than 20,000 members in 100-plus countries, headquartered in Jackson, Mich. In addition to the United States, there are membership offices in Australia, Brazil, Canada, Germany, Italy, Latin America, New Zealand, Russia and the United Kingdom.

PMA membership is open to any firm doing a substantial portion of its business in photo imaging retailing, scrapbook and custom framing retailing, processing (digital and silver halide) or service work. Cooperating memberships are held by firms that manufacture or distribute products or services for the imaging industry. PMA provides more than 100 services to its members, and holds the world's largest annual international photo imaging trade show, typically drawing well over 600 exhibitors and 20,000-plus attendees.

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