Some like license plate frames that reflect their favorite team, alma mater or other personal statements. A new one is targeted toward a different group of people though and doesn't come with a snazzy exterior, although high-tech bells and whistles are embedded inside. Its intended audience is drivers sick of getting traffic tickets.
noPhoto is a frame with camera blocking technology to prevent speeders and red-light runners from getting tickets. The frame by noLimits Enterprises, an Ohio-based company providing customers with "freedom and security that is rightfully yours," detects traffic camera flashes, sending its own flash back "at the exact moment needed to overexpose the traffic camera." With an overexposed image, the license plate number will not be visible and therefore a ticket can not be issued.
Watch this promo video for noPhoto:
Here's a bit more of a technical explanation:
To understand the noPhoto, it helps to have a basic understanding of photography. Generally speaking, the amount of light that a camera collects while taking a picture is called "exposure." If there is not enough light, than the final picture will be too dark to see much. Conversely, if there is too much light, the picture will be too bright to see. At the most basic level, what the noPhoto does is make the license plate portion of the image too bright for the camera's sensor to handle. The noPhoto is so powerful that it causes what are called "blown highlights" - that is, the brightness is so overwhelming that the camera sees the image as a featureless field of white light. As you can see in the image below, the camera simply can't see the license plate.
What noPhoto sending its own flash to overexpose the license plate image looks like. (Image: noPhoto.com)
Watch the technology in action with this test:
As the noPhoto creator Jonathan Dandrow explains, it took a significant amount of expertise to develop this technology (and financing), so he has turned to the crowd-funding site Indiegogo in his efforts to raise funds. So far more than $25,000 has been raised of the $80,000 goal with 10 days left.
Although noPhoto doesn't violate any laws involving blockage of the license plate, Indiegogo does provide this disclaimer of its own: "Use of this device may violate vehicular codes and laws and regulations in some states and jurisdictions. Each user should make his or her own determination about such matters and uses the devices at his or her own risk. The presence of this campaign on Indiegogo.com is not a representation by Indiegogo, Inc. regarding the legality of the device described in this campaign."
As the noPhoto website states though, "there are no laws in existence regulating how much light is cast onto the license plate."
According to the noPhoto website, Dandrow created the technology due to privacy concerns associated with such traffic cameras and some evidence that suggests the cameras lead to more accidents rather than preventing them.