Facebook has acquired a facial image analysis firm FacioMetrics as it tries to give users new features to add special effects to photos and videos. The technology developed by the startup also includes capabilities for face tracking and recognizing emotions, which could potentially open up other applications for Facebook. The financial terms of the acquisition of FacioMetrics, a startup that was spun off from Carnegie Mellon University, were not disclosed. Facebook will discontinue the products, which are no longer available on app stores.The FacioMetrics website now only has a message about the acquisition. "How people share and communicate is changing and things like masks and other effects allow people to express themselves in fun and creative ways," a Facebook spokesman wrote in an email Wednesday.
Machine learning and the artificial intelligence that it promises to deliver are clearly here to stay. The only remaining question is what will these technologies conquer next? The algorithms and techniques that have been exciting researchers and practitioners over the last few years are being dramatically improved, tuned for perfection, and in some cases completely replaced by a new generation of increasingly powerful algorithms. The investments in areas such as deep learning and the promise of building multi-layer perceptron (or artificial neurons) to solve a host of challenging problems has started to move out of dusty offices and laboratories toward the center of our economy in areas such as healthcare, marketing, communications, finance, energy, education, and even public safety. The number of useful applications is growing rapidly and the benefits of early investments by technology giants and influential research institutions are paying off nicely.
CEVA, Inc. (NASDAQ: CEVA), the leading licensor of signal processing IP for smarter, connected devices, today announced that Novatek Microelectronics, Taiwan's 2nd largest fabless IC design house, has licensed and deployed the CEVA-XM4 intelligent vision DSP for its next-generation vision-enabled System-on-Chips (SoCs) targeting a range of end markets requiring advanced visual intelligence capabilities. Novatek's current camera SoC lineup for car DVR and surveillance systems integrates the 3rd generation CEVA-MM3101 imaging & vision DSP and is shipping in volume. By integrating CEVA-XM4 as a dedicated vision processor in their next-generation SoC designs, Novatek and its customers can rapidly deploy highly-sophisticated vision algorithms to enable advanced applications such as surveillance systems with face detection and authentication, drone anti-collision systems and advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS). These types of applications are built utilizing CEVA's Deep Neural Network (CDNN2), a proprietary software framework that enables deep learning tasks to run on the CEVA-XM4 and outperform any GPU or CPU-based system in terms of speed, power consumption and memory bandwidth requirements. "The CEVA-XM4 is an exceptional processor for imaging and computer vision, offering outstanding performance, flexibility and power efficiency for applications requiring visual intelligence capabilities," said Allen Lu, Assistant Vice President of iVoT SBU, Novatek.
If the founders of a new face recognition app get their way, anonymity in public could soon be a thing of the past. FindFace, launched two months ago and currently taking Russia by storm, allows users to photograph people in a crowd and work out their identities, with 70% reliability. It works by comparing photographs to profile pictures on Vkontakte, a social network popular in Russia and the former Soviet Union, with more than 200 million accounts. In future, the designers imagine a world where people walking past you on the street could find your social network profile by sneaking a photograph of you, and shops, advertisers and the police could pick your face out of crowds and track you down via social networks. In the short time since the launch, Findface has amassed 500,000 users and processed nearly 3m searches, according to its founders, 26-year-old Artem Kukharenko, and 29-year-old Alexander Kabakov.
Artificial intelligence (AI) is intelligence exhibited by machines. In computer science, the field of AI research defines itself as the study of "intelligent agents": any device that perceives its environment and takes actions that maximize its chance of success at some goal. Colloquially, the term "artificial intelligence" is applied when a machine mimics "cognitive" functions that humans associate with other human minds, such as "learning" and "problem solving". As machines become increasingly capable, mental facilities once thought to require intelligence are removed from the definition. For example, optical character recognition is no longer perceived as an exemplar of "artificial intelligence", having become a routine technology.