Thursday, April 26, 2012

Descriptive Camera

I like this story due to its creativity in solving a complex image processing problem. The aim of the project is to find a way to generate a descriptive metadata about each photo that can be appended to the image on the fly — information about who is in each photo, what they're doing, and their environment. This metadata is quite useful in order to search, filter, and cross-reference our photo collections.

"The technology at the core of the Descriptive Camera is Amazon's Mechanical Turk API. It allows a developer to submit Human Intelligence Tasks (HITs) for workers on the internet to complete. The developer sets the guidelines for each task and designs the interface for the worker to submit their results. The developer also sets the price they're willing to pay for the successful completion of each task. An approval and reputation system ensures that workers are incented to deliver acceptable results."

Descriptive camera hardware is based on embedded Linux platform from TI

"After the shutter button is pressed, the photo is sent to Mechanical Turk for processing and the camera waits for the results. A yellow LED indicates that the results are still "developing" in a nod to film-based photo technology. With a HIT price of $1.25, results are returned typically within 6 minutes and sometimes as fast as 3 minutes." Few examples of the descriptions are given on the project's page.

The Descriptive Camera was created by Matt Richardson for Dan O'Sullivan's Spring 2012 Computational Cameras class at New York University's Interactive Telecommunications Program (NYU ITP).

More info: BBC, Discovery, Betabeat, NYT.

1 comment:

  1. Neat project. Next step is to sub-contract all my work to the hive mind

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