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Adobe’s New ‘Unblur’ Filter Makes CSI-Style Effects Real

You know that scene in CSI and its ilk where the detective says, “Can you enhance the image?” and some faceless tech hits a few keys and suddenly the license plate is clear and readable? Nerds have been mocking those scenes for decades, but it might be time to stop.

Last week at its Max Conference Adobe showed off a new Photoshop tool the company calls unblur. Unblur does exactly what the cliche detective is asking for — it makes blurry photos sharp. While there may be some forensic use for unblur, the filter seems aimed more at those with less than steady hands. That once-in-a-lifetime image ruined by shaky hands? No problem, just unblur it.

The video below gives some more details about how unblur repairs blurry images. Unfortunately, the video itself is too blurry to really see how well it works. However, given that unblur was demoed to a crowd of photo and imaging specialists who proceeded to gasp and applaud, I’m guessing the results were pretty impressive.

So far Adobe has given no word on when or where the unblur filter might land, but the next version of Photoshop seems like a safe bet. Until then, please, feel free to mock CSI.

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