beanz Magazine

Image Filters

John Fowler on Flickr

Learn the secrets behind pixels, image blurs, and all your favourite Instagram filters!

Thanks to micro-chips and mobile phones, it only takes a few seconds to snap a photo, pop on a snazzy filter, and share your masterpiece with people all over the world. As easy as breathing! So easy, in fact, that we sometimes forget how remarkable this technology is. Let’s take a look at on one of the many juicy pieces of this puzzle: image filters. Specifically: brightness, saturation, and blur filters.

Breaking Down a Digital Photo

Every digital image is divided into a grid of tiny squares — often thousands and thousands of squares — called pixels. Open any picture you want and zoom in really close. Sooner or later, even the smoothest of lines become blocky and chunk-like.

Original image by John Fowler on Flickr

In a black and white (greyscale) photo, computers typically represent each pixel with a single number between 0 and 255, where “0” is pure black while “255” is pure white, and every other number is a shade in between. Take a look at the values extracted from this black & white picture of a kitty, downsized to be 15×15 pixels:

Become a subscriber and get access to the rest of this article. Plus all our magazine articles.

Stories also include numerous links to help parents, kids, and teachers learn more. Get access today at just $15 per year for online magazine only or $29.99/year for print + online ($35/year outside US)!

Subscribe Today!

Also In The August 2018 Issue

Logic puzzles help develop reasoning skills useful for programming, computer science, and anything you might do.

Find perfect and fun gifts for your loved ones that teach STEAM concepts and skills.

From light-up bow-ties to conductive thread, you’ll be the life of the party with this STEAM-inspired gear.

A free online test service reveals how much personal data your web browser is giving away.

Add more tools to your command line arsenal, including running mini-scripts and making backup copies.

Use switches to take your robotic creations to the next level.

An old classic with a electronic twist, featuring JavaScript and micro:bit.

Create the American flag in SketchUp using this detailed tutorial.

From lasers to supernovas, Berboucha is making science communication a priority.

Code can always be improved. Check out these tips to make you the best programmer you can be!

It’s a programming language unlike any you’ve seen before. Check out this symbolic system designed for mathematical calculations.

New, improved, faster, and sleeker - it’s Scratch 3, your new favourite block language!

Learn about the brilliant algorithm behind all of your GPS devices.

It’s free, comprehensive, and available on-the-go. This cool app helps you master Python faster than ever before.

Open up whole new worlds to explore through these interesting, diverse add-ons.

Links from the bottom of all the October 2018 articles, collected in one place for you to print, share, or bookmark.

Interesting stories about computer science, software programming, and technology for October 2018.