At this year’s Consumer Electronics Show, I walked many miles and saw countless demos. Several of these demos were memorable, but one in particular really got my mental gears turning: Microsoft’s Hololens.
Hololens, of course, is Microsoft’s ‚mixed reality‘ glasses product, which has been shipping in pre-production form for about a year. (Previously, I would have used the term ‚augmented reality‘ to refer to Hololens, which overlays computer-generated graphics on the user’s view of the physical world. But here I’m adopting the Microsoft’s preferred term, ‚mixed reality‘ which many people now use to describe systems in which ‚people, places, and objects from your physical and virtual worlds merge together.‘) Over the past five years, I’ve seen many demos of virtual reality, augmented reality and mixed reality. Most of these showed promise – but the promise usually felt distant, because the demos weren’t sufficiently polished to feel ‚real‘ and weren’t easy to use. That was then. This is now: Hololens has nailed both the ‚feels real‘ and ease-of-use aspects. Wearing Hololens, I played a shoot-em-up video game against an army of robots. The experience was stunning, thanks to three key capabilities. First, Hololens is a wearable, battery-powered device, so I was able to move about the room to dodge hostile robots. Second, Hololens accurately mapped the room I was in, enabling the robotic invaders to create what really looked like cracks in the actual walls of the room. And third, as I turned my head and shifted my position within the room, Hololens adapted to these movements seamlessly, so that the illusion of merged physical and virtual worlds was maintained. Now that I’ve experienced robust mixed reality, I foresee many compelling applications for this technology beyond gaming: Enabling physicians to see inside a body to enable safer, more accurate treatment. Giving utility workers a clear view of underground pipes and cables. Providing consumers with a realistic preview of how a room will look after redecorating it. Allowing museum visitors to see a skeleton transform into a fully formed, animated dinosaur. (The fact that Hololens sells for $3,000 suggests that, for a while at least, this technology is more likely to be adopted by hospitals, utility companies and museums than by individual consumers.) Of course, a convincing mixed reality (MR) experience -one in which the virtual and physical worlds interact in a realistic way – requires the MR device to maintain an accurate understanding of the surrounding physical world – and the user’s position within it – in three dimensions, with very low latency. That is, it requires fast, highly accurate 3D computer vision. MR doesn’t necessarily require a wearable device. Vehicle applications, for example, can use the windshield as a projection screen. And 8tree’s clever handheld device for quantifying surface damage projects information onto the surface being inspected. But in many cases, glasses are the most compelling way to deliver mixed reality. This is because they leave your hands free, because they know where you are looking, and because they have the ability to project information into your field of view, wherever you’re looking. Packing all of the technology required for a convincing MR experience into a wearable device is a daunting challenge, however. With Hololens, Microsoft has given us a hint of what’s possible. The Hololens team has clearly put enormous effort into everything from custom chips to industrial design to create a device that’s reasonably comfortable to wear (though still bulky). A few years ago, the Microsoft Kinect had a major catalyzing effect on many people’s thinking about low-cost 3D visual perception. In a similar fashion, I believe that Hololens will spur many aha moments, leading to accelerated innovation in wearable computer vision devices, low-power 3D computer vision, and mixed reality. Given the need for many product developers to learn about these technologies, my colleagues and I at the Embedded Vision Alliance have expanded the range of tutorial articles, videos, industry news and other resources on these topics available at the Alliance’s website, www.embedded-vision.com.
Conventional cameras capture images using only three frequency bands (red, blue, green), while the full visual spectrum is a much richer representation that facilitates a wide range of additional and important applications. A new technology allows conventional cameras to increase their spectral resolution, capturing information over a wide range of wavelengths without the need for specialized equipment or controlled lighting.
Although different 3D cameras and scanners have existed for some time, present solutions have been limited by several unwanted compromises. If you wanted high speed, you would get very low resolution and accuracy (e.g. Time-of-Flight cameras and existing stereo vision cameras, which despite being fast typically have resolution in the millimeter to centimeter range). If you wanted high resolution and accuracy, you would typically get a camera that was slow and expensive (e.g. the high accuracy scanners).
Vom 18. bis 19. Oktober veranstaltet der VDI die nunmehr 4. Fachkonferenz zum Thema ‚Industrielle Bildverarbeitung‘ im Kongresshaus Baden-Baden. In 19 Fachvorträgen werden u.a. die Schwerpunktthemen Automation in der Robotik mit 3D-Bildverarbeitung, Oberflächeninspektion und Bildverarbeitung in der Nahrungsmittelindustrie und intelligenten Logistik behandelt.
C-Red 2 is an ultra high speed low noise camera designed for high resolution SWIR-imaging based on the Snake detector from Sofradir. The camera is capable of unprecedented performances up to 400fps with a read out noise below 30 electrons. To achieve these performances, it integrates a 640×512 InGaAs PIN Photodiode detector with 15m pixel pitch for high resolution, which embeds an electronic shutter with integration pulses shorter than 1μs. The camera is capable of windowing and multiple ROI, allowing faster image rate while maintaining a very low noise.
Ob Automatisierung, Mensch-Maschine-Kollaboration in der Robotik oder selbstfahrende Autos – die Auswahl des richtigen Sensors hängt stark von der Applikation und dem gewünschten Output ab. Diese 6 Faktoren helfen Ihnen dabei, den passenden Sensor für Ihre Applikation zu finden!
Vom 17. bis 18. Oktober veranstaltet die Metrologic Group ihr diesjähriges Anwendertreffen in Uhingen. Bei den zahlreichen Anwendervorträgen und der Hausmesse sind auch Messtechnik Firmen wie Creaform, Faro, Hexagon, Kreon und Wenzel vertreten. Anmeldeschluss ist bereits der 4. Oktober.