Perception Arises with Locomotion

Hand-Eye Coordination and Computer Vision

For humans, it goes without saying that vision is extremely valuable. When you stop to think about it, it’s remarkable what a diverse set of capabilities is enabled by human vision – from reading facial expressions, to navigating complex three-dimensional spaces (whether by foot, bicycle, car, or otherwise), to performing intricate tasks like threading a needle.
One of the reasons why I’m so excited about the potential of computer vision is that I believe that it will bring a similar range of diverse and valuable capabilities to many types of devices and systems. In the past, computer vision required too much computation to be deployed widely. But today, sufficient processing power is available at cost and power consumption levels suitable for high-volume products. As a result, computer vision is proliferating into thousands of products. The vast range of diverse capabilities enabled by vision (from user interfaces to video summarization to navigation, for example), coupled with the wide range of potential applications, can be daunting. How do we figure out which of these capabilities and applications are really worthwhile, and which are mere novelties?

I think the analogy with biological vision can help. In a recent lecture, U.C. Berkeley professor Jitendra Malik pointed out that in biological evolution, „perception arises with locomotion.“ In other words, organisms that spend their lives in one spot have little use for vision. But when an organism can move, vision becomes very valuable – enabling the organism to seek food and mates, for example, and to avoid becoming food for other creatures. In the technological world, to paraphrase Professor Malik, when you put vision and locomotion together, you get things like self-driving cars. And vacuum cleaning robots, obstacle-avoiding drones, driverless forklifts, etc. It’s possible to build autonomous, mobile devices like these without vision, but it rarely makes sense to do so. In other words, just as in the biological world, vision becomes essential when we create devices that move about.

What other clues can we glean from biology to inform our thinking about the most valuable uses of computer vision? In his lecture, Professor Malik pointed out that in biological evolution, „the development of the hand led to the development of the brain.“ While feet carry us from place to place, hands are arguably the main means by which humans act on the physical world. Human hands are extraordinarily versatile – and vision is essential to realizing their potential. Similarly, machines that act on the physical world require visual perception to realize their full potential. For years, this has been evident through research projects showing that vision-enabled robots can do amazing things, from the robot that always wins at Rock, Papers, Scissors to robots that learn how to grasp new object through experimentation. What’s exciting now is that robots that use vision to act on the physical world are being deployed at scale, from tiny interactive toys to large agricultural machines. Of course, not all of these robots have what we would think of as „hands“; depending on the tasks they’re designed for, other types of manipulators may be appropriate. In his lecture, Professor Malik quoted the Greek philosopher Anaxagoras, who said: „It is because of being armed with hands that man is the most intelligent animal.“ Similarly, as machines gain the ability to interact with the physical world, they need intelligence – especially visual intelligence – to become truly capable.

If you want to understand how computer vision is changing industries and business models, and learn about the latest practical techniques and technologies for adding vision to all types of systems, I invite you to join me, Mark Bünger, and over 40 other speakers at the Embedded Vision Summit, taking place May 1-3, 2017 in Santa Clara, California. For details about this unique conference, and to register, please visit

Perception Arises with Locomotion
Bild: Embedded Vision Alliance

Das könnte Sie auch interessieren

Positive Umsatzprognosen für die europäische IBV

Der europäische Bildverarbeitungsverband EMVA geht für 2017 von einem Anstieg der Umsätze für die europäische Bildverarbeitung von acht bis zehn Prozent aus. So lagen die Umsätze im ersten Quartal 2017 bereits 20,5% über denen des Vorjahres.

EMVA Young Professional Award 2017

Der diesjährige EMVA Young Professional Award für außergewöhnliche und innovative Arbeit Studierender und Berufseinsteiger in der Bildverarbeitung geht an Boaz Arad (32), der für seine Arbeit ‚Sparse Recovery of Hyperspectral Signal from Natural RGB Images‘ ausgezeichnet wurde. Arad promoviert derzeit an der Ben-Gurion University of the Negev und ist CTO des Startups HC-Vision.

Embedded Vision Europe Conference 2017

Der europäische Bildverarbeitungsverband EMVA plant erstmals vom 12. bis 13. Oktober zusammen mit der Messe Stuttgart die Ausrichtung der Embedded Vision Europe (EVE) Conference in Stuttgart. Über die Ziele und Inhalte der Veranstaltung sprach inVISION mit Gabriele Jansen, Mitglied im ehrenamtlichen Vorstand der EMVA und Geschäftsführerin von Vision Ventures.

Projekt zu 3D-Gesichtserkennungssystemen

Das Centre for Machine Vision der University of the West of England (UWE Bristol) kooperiert mit dem britischen Unternehmen Customer Clever, um ein System zur 3D-Gesichtserkennung zu entwickeln, das erstmals auch gewerblich genutzt werden könnte. Das auf zwei Jahre angesetzte Projekt wird u.a. durch 170.000£ Förderung von der staatlichen Agentur Innovate UK mitfinanziert.

Automation Technology erweitert Produktionsstandort

Aufgrund des wachsenden Auftragsvolumens hat AT seinen Produktionsstandort in Bad Oldesloe erweitert. Die seit Mai offiziell in Betrieb befindliche Halle erweitert die Produktionsstätte um mehr als 1.000m² und ist mit einer Solaranlage ausgerüstet, die in Kombination mit neuen Energiespeichern zukünftig eine nahezu autarke Stromversorgung des gesamten Unternehmens erlaubt.

Vertriebskooperation zwischen Tattile und Framos

Die beiden Unternehmen Tattile und Framos haben eine gemeinsame Zusammenarbeit bekannt gegeben. Die Vertriebskooperation umfasst die gesamte Palette an Hardware- und Softwareprodukten (Vision Controller, Industriekameras etc.) des Unternehmens Tattile, die zukünftig über das Framos-Vertriebsnetz in Europa und Nordamerika erhältlich sein wird.