The Lytro camera has a unique design and dead simple interface. It uses a relatively new technology called a “Light Field Censor” to map light in all directions instead of just one. In most light conditions the picture quality is on par with high end smart phones like the iPhone 4s and Droid Nexus. The main draw to this camera is the ability to refocus after the shutter captures the picture. Special software is required to accomplish this but the Lytro team provides that software (which is mac only for now) as well as online galleries and embed codes that allow you to share your refocus-able pictures on Facebook or wherever you like.
In my opinion, the most practical and useful feature of this camera is the speed and ease in which it allows you to capture moments. One button to turn on the camera and tap it again to shoot. Slide your finger tip over the top of the camera to zoom. The touch screen on the back is quick, intuitive and responsive. Ultimately the Light Field technology (which is the entire reason for this camera) is for all intents and purposes, just another cool feature; a feature on the same level as super high resolution or great low light usability. It is more a proof of concept than anything. When this Light Field technology finds its way into other cameras it will be a distinguishing feature. Some users try to optimize the refocus-ability of their Lytro photos by hiding something interesting in the background to be revealed; I see that as a novelty.
I like the Lytro camera but while Light Field technology may change the way pictures are taken, it will not change the way we take pictures.
If you want to know more about this camera and how it works I encourage you to visit Lytro.com
Check my pictures while you’re there. lytro.com/PaulBilly/