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Dynamic Vision Sensor tech works like human retina

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Posted August 27, 2013

Dynamic Vision Sensor tech works like human retina

If technology expertise can advance artificial intelligence, what can we imagine for artificial vision? An interesting development in artificial vision comes from a Swiss company iniLabs. They have developed a camera that behaves like the human eye, based on the wonders of the human retina. Just as robotics developers take their cues from biology, this Swiss team has recognized how biology can inspire an alternative to conventional machine vision. The workings of the human eye require far less power than a digital camera would require and leave less information to be processed. Borrowing from the way the eye functions, the company has built a more efficient digital camera.

Zurich-based iniLabs Ltd is a spinoff of the Institute of Neuroinformatics of the University of Zurich and the ETH Zurich. They describe their business as designing, producing, and selling neurotechnological systems. Their eye-like camera is the VS128 Dynamic Vision Sensor (DVS).

Making a case for DVS advantages, iniLabs said that conventional vision sensors see the world as a series of frames, which is inefficient. “Successive frames contain enormously redundant information, wasting energy, computational power and time. In addition, each frame imposes the same exposure time on every pixel, making it impossible to process scenes containing very dark and very bright regions.”

The DVS, in contrast, works like the human retina. Power, data storage and computational requirements are drastically reduced, and the dynamic sensor range is increased by orders of magnitude due to the local processing—no sending out of entire images at fixed frame rates. “Only the local pixel-level changes caused by moving in a scene are transmitted – at exactly the time they occur. The result is a stream of events at microsecond time resolution, equivalent to or better than conventional high-speed vision sensors running at thousands of frames per second.”

 

Read more at: Phys.org

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