Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Embedded Vision Alliance forms to drive machine vision

Industry leaders unite on “machines that see”
By Nick Flaherty www.flaherty.co.uk

More than fifteen leading technology companies— including some of the largest semiconductor companies—have joined forces to speed the adoption of computer vision capabilities in electronic products. 
 The ability of machines to see and understand their environments - embedded vision - promises to transform the electronics industry with products that are more intelligent and aware of their environments, and to create significant new markets for electronic equipment and components. The Embedded Vision Alliance (www.embedded-vision.com), aims to enable the proliferation of embedded vision technology by providing design engineers with information, practical know-how, and industry standards.
“Adding computer vision to embedded systems creates phenomenal new products, markets, and opportunities,” said Jeff Bier, president of embedded analysts BDTI. “Just look at the Microsoft Kinect, which added vision to the Xbox 360—it became the fastest-selling consumer electronics device in history, shipping more than 10 million units in 5 months. But that’s just a small part of the story. From automobiles that prevent accidents to security cameras that prevent crimes, embedded vision will proliferate across a multitude of markets.”
BDTI, Xilinx, and IMS Research initiated the Embedded Vision Alliance (EVA) and are being joined by Analog Devices, Apical, Avnet Electronics Marketing, CEVA, CogniVue, Freescale, MathWorks, National Instruments, NVIDIA, Texas Instruments, Tokyo Electron Device, Ximea, and XMOS as founding members. These companies share the belief that incorporating vision capabilities into future products will bring dramatic benefits to users and provide high-growth opportunities in consumer, medical, automotive, entertainment, industrial, and retail markets.
“The momentum behind embedded vision applications is growing at an astounding rate and industry collaboration is needed to enable the technology’s smooth adoption in new markets,” said Vin Ratford, senior vice president of worldwide marketing and business development at Xilinx. “Xilinx is excited to be a founding member of the new Embedded Vision Alliance and looks forward to a long, successful partnership with the Alliance members. Through this collaboration—and by delivering the right combination of performance, price points and flexibility to intelligently manage and act upon vast amounts of real-time image data within the parameters of industry standards—our programmable platforms are poised to open up a new world for systems development.”
As a first step, the Embedded Vision Alliance is launching a website at www.embedded-vision.com. The site will serve as a source of practical information that will help design engineers incorporate vision capabilities in new systems. The EVA’s future plans include newsletters, educational webinars, industry reports, technology standards, and other related activities. Everyone is free to access the information on the website, which is maintained through member and industry contributions. Membership information is also available at the site.
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