This paper introduces a versatile imaging system that encompasses a wide variety of methods, devices and systems. The versatile imaging system or device introduced in this paper is designed to facilitate the synthesis of representations of stimuli covering substantially all directions or only a subset of directions around a given reference or view point, comprises at least one grid of one or more focusing elements disposed on an N-dimensional and arbitrarily shaped surface, at least one grid of one or more sensor elements disposed on an N-dimensional and arbitrarily shaped surface, and optionally, at least one grid of one or more stimulus guide elements disposed on an N- dimensional and arbitrarily shaped surface, where N can be chosen to be 1, 2, 3, or any other suitable quantity. A sampling of contemporary imaging systems that fall within the scope of the system is described. Pointers to architectures that take greater advantage of the features of the system are presented.
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