Anand Sukumaran Nair
Startup Founder, Software Engineer, Abstract thinker
Co-founder, Engineering @ Engagespot
How Computer Vision and AR will change the world?Mar 13, 2018
I’m always excited about the future of technology and the ways in which it will make our lives easier. There are many technologies that I think will change the way we interact with computers. For me, the most interesting one is Computer Vision combined with AI and Augmented Reality as a sub division of CV. In this article, I just wanted to express my thoughts on how these technologies will help to reshape the future.
Wait, When you want to build the future, it’s better to know the history. Right? Let me talk a bit about how human computer interaction evolved over the last few decades.
In the 1970s when microcomputers evolved, people used to interact with computers using keyboard. Comparing it with the natural method of human interaction, which is primarily voice and hand gestures, using keyboard to interact with the machine creates a very big gap between humans and technology. And the output that we get from the machine was also text, which makes computers very less friendly to us.
By Ed Uthman — originally posted to Flickr as Apple I Computer, CC BY-SA 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=7180001
Then in 1980s came GUI, and Mouse. We began to see pictures and graphics, which is more friendly to us than reading simple text. And with mouse, we started pointing things on the monitor just like we point real world things with our fingers. See, computers began to understand interactions that are more closer to our natural interactions and started giving graphical outputs that looks similar to real world.
In the mid 2000s, Smartphones arrived! I personally love this transformation. That entirely changed the way we interact with technology and became a mass medium after computers. With Touch Screens, people could just use their fingers for interaction. No more intermediate devices like mouses and keyboards between humans and computers.
See how the gap between humans and technology has reduced considerably! Being able to touch something and drag. Humans love that way of interaction because it is very close to what nature taught us!
But still, we cannot interact with machines just we communicate with another human. Also, they cannot see and understand things just like what we do with our eyes.
So what’s lacking for computers is Ears and Eyes? Umm, No. They have microphones and camera. They have the sense organs. Then what’s missing?
Well, A brain!
Giving machines the power to listen, see, perceive and take actions is what it takes to bring technology even closer to humans. Remember our mission statement? “Bringing Technology Closer to Humans” ;)
Thanks to Amazon, Google and Apple. Voice assistants are now getting popular. I use Siri to communicate with my iPhone when I am driving alone. And it is even nice that it communicates back to me using its voice. I don’t have to look down to know where to turn. Though the technology is not yet great, it helps. It’s evolving!
At Logidots, we are excited about the visual organ of machines and the part of it’s brain to perceive the visuals. For tech geeks, it is a mix of Computer Vision, AI and Augmented Reality.
We are working on something that will give machines the power to understand what they see and overlay information on top of it in the real world.
You may think, who is going to hold a phone camera up all the time and see the world through a 5 inch screen when you have naturally gifted eyes with a great field of view!
Well, You’re correct. It’s kinda limiting our own natural abilities. But wait. Don’t be pessimistic. Remember the line where I mentioned Smartphones as the most interesting revolution? Sorry but I have to say, something bigger and more interesting is coming. Smart Glasses! Now go back to the limitation that we just discussed. You don’t want to hold a 5 inch screen anymore. Your eyes will become the screen and the whole world infront of you will become the canvas! The possibilities of this new device are unlimited. I will have to write a new article to list out how Smart Glasses will change our lives ;)
So, the smart glasses will see exactly the things that your eyes can see. It’s not something like a third eye. But it can perceive more things that your brain cannot. And also, it can add more information on top of the visuals that your normals eyes see!
Remember the Siri use case for driving which I mentioned before? Now think about this. Instead of (or along with) voice instructions, you can see a line drawn on the road itself to let you know where you should turn. See, you don’t have to look down on your phone screen. The directions are right in front of you, drawn on the road!
Seems so futuristic? Well, No. Hopefully, It won’t take so many years. It’s already happening.
In my opinion, what it takes to build such a future, are the following things.
- Computers should identify the things that they ‘see’. (For example, it should identify the road inorder to draw the line)
- Augment an information / graphic on the real world and let it be persistant for everyone else to see. It should behave just like a physical object.
- Finally, a good looking, fashionable Smart Glass that people can wear.
No 3 may take a while (I guess so). Or may not. Will it be Magic Leap or Apple or Google or some other startup that will come up with that “revolutionary” device?
At Logidots, we are working on the first two problems. Computers should see and perceive just like us humans (Well, Am I too optimistic?) and Augment information on top of the real world on a 1:1 scale. You can read Charlie Fink’s article to get more idea about this.
For me, being an entrepreneur is more about contributing to building a better future where technology will become more close and friendly to humans. Thinking about what seems impossible today but is essential for the future is the best way to get an idea of building a great business.
Why wait for the future when you can build it!