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LDV Vision Summit, Day 1, Overview

Another LDV Vision Summit  just ended yesterday and with it, the conclusion of 2 full days of discussions about visual tech and its impact on our world. While it has become a cliché to point out the huge amount of photos/videos  taken, posted and shared daily, what is much less understood is the multiple ramifications into our lives. This summit took a deep dive into the current and upcoming state of visual tech and offered a glimpse onto potential answers. There was too much said to be properly  detailed here so here are some of the interesting thoughts that emerged.

The SVA theatre in New York hosted the 2015 LDV Vision Summit. © Robert Wright/LDV Vision Summit

With the first day dedicated to the science, most of  the panels included researchers in the field of computer vision. One of the key expression, proposed by Microsoft’s Visual Group researcher Michael Cohen  was probably “capture, edit, share, view”, summing up in 4 words the visual experience. The goal, ultimately, is to include the four into one unique moment.  While discussing computational photography, a lot was being said about exploring exciting new ways to capture subjects, either  through walls using wavelengths or around blind corners by enhancing bouncing light.  Photography is only limited by the current sensors being used and it shouldn’t be too long before we will see added powers expand our definition of what an image is. Both Graphene ( imagine a camera that could also sense and capture humidity levels, for example) and curved sensors ( which would double the amount of photon captured) were considered as highly probable enhancements.

Computational Photography Panel or how we are no so far from capturing more than we can see.© Vizworld/LDV Vision Summit

Computer vision experts were not far behind in reaffirming the need for correct understanding of the content. A lot of what researchers in this field have being working on is using visual content  to extract meaningful information from massive data source  for a variety of purposes. From helping the vision impaired navigate to automated identification, it is not surprising to see computer vision inserting itself into more of our lives. Is it a commodity ? The panelists disagreed. What they agreed on was that its expanding usage offers more opportunities of research and discoveries.

Computer vision might be starting to becoming ubiquitous but it still has huge potential for growth.  © Vizworld/LDV Vision Summit


One of the most captivating aspect of the summit might not have happened on a stage, however . What this year edition brought over last year is the extended range of participants. From immersive technology cameras to face recognition activated door bells, along with apps for ordering spare parts or others for creating animated photos, it was fascinating to see how widespread visual tech is inserted. A strong reminder on how our world is expanding its use of visual information.

A long and never-ending love has always existed between fashion and photography. Either would have had a miserable existence without each other. Breakthrough in technology have only increased this powerful relationship and thus it was not surprising to see in attendance, both on the stage and as attendees, companies deeply involved in visual fashion tech. From companies capable of scanning your feet with a simple depth camera for custom-made shoes to apps that automatically help you select your make up or accessories based on your matching color, there was an array of brilliant solutions, some already on market and some we should see very soon.

Clothing Commerce was a captivating panel on how our shopping experience is about to change thanks to groundbreaking visual tech. © Vizworld/LDV Vision Summit

And this was just a small part of Day 1 and just the conversation that happened on stage. The summit is also a huge networking opportunity where researchers, entrepreneurs, investors, from a wide variety of backgrounds and countries come to meet and discuss opportunities. Therefore  a lot of the conversation happen in the break room in between session, where you will see, for example, a computer vision researcher from Yahoo argue with an app builder from Argentina over the qualities or default of a VR camera. Their common passion being visual tech, the comments are both highly technical as well as aesthetics.  Stay tuned for more reporting of the LDV Vision Summit.

Photo by Ferran.

Author: Paul Melcher

Paul Melcher is the founder of Kaptur and Managing Director of Melcher System, a consultancy for visual technology firms. He is an entrepreneur, advisor, and consultant with a rich background in visual tech, content licensing, business strategy, and technology with more than 20 years experience in developing world-renowned photo-based companies with already two successful exits.

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