The University of Southampton

Young university innovators unveil future technologies at CES 2018

Published: 9 January 2018
Aura Vision Labs uses AI to generate high value data for retail and city planning

Pioneering researchers and students from Electronics and Computer Science (ECS) at the University of Southampton will exhibit their innovations at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) 2018 in Las Vegas.

The world-renowned trade show will offer the globe’s first glimpse of inventions launching from ground-breaking research through demonstrations in Eureka Park, where Southampton’s Future Worlds incubator will lead the UK’s university presence at CES 2018.

University entrepreneurs will be giving live demonstrations of three featured products at CES 2018, including an artificial intelligence powered video analytics platform developed by ECS researchers.

Computer Vision expert Daniel Martinho-Corbishley, from ECS, will showcase Aura Vision Labs, a cloud-based video analytics platform that harnesses the latest innovations in artificial intelligence to generate valuable data, such as gender, age and clothing styles, for uses in high-tech retail and future smart cities. The platform, which is built on cutting-edge PhD research, uses state-of-the-art ‘deep learning’ technology to extract useful information about how people look and move from live footage captured on low-cost cameras and existing security systems.

“There are over 245 million professionally installed video surveillance cameras in operation globally, but only one per cent of this footage is currently being analysed,” Daniel explains. “Our technology harnesses this fantastic source of video data, working with low-cost cameras and existing security systems to provide retailers with a simple, cost-effective way to gain more accurate, in-depth and real-time information than has ever been possible before.”

Looking towards other applications, the international smart city revolution aims to reduce road traffic and ensure public safety through technological enhancement. The Aura Vision Labs team plans to use their technology to simultaneously track people and cars from CCTV, helping city operators identify atypical congestion and promote walking as part of a healthy lifestyle.

The University of Southampton is leading the UK’s university presence at CES 2018, with other live demonstrations on its incubator stand.

Travis Ralph-Donaldson from the Web Science Institute will bring a hands-on demonstration of Handy Kanji, an iOS app that gamifies the teaching of the Japanese writing system. The application uses intelligent stroke recognition and scoring algorithms to teach hundreds of Japanese Kanji characters.

From the Faculty of Engineering and the Environment, Associate Professor Filippo Fazi and Research Fellow Dr Marcos Simón will demonstrate Soton Audio Labs, a groundbreaking system that creates immersive 3D audio from a single soundbar. The technology uses image processing with a built-in camera to track the location of the viewer in the room, and delivers a perfect 3D experience using destructive and constructive sound cancellation techniques.

Future Worlds is the on-campus startup incubator at the University of Southampton. Since its launch in 2015, Future Worlds has been helping entrepreneurs launch groundbreaking startups with origins ranging from cutting-edge collaborative research through to student projects.

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