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Now Is the Time to Invest in Computer Vision and Secure a Competitive Advantage

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Advancements in artificial intelligence are changing the future of work. For instance, different fields of artificial intelligence enable autonomous driving, augmented working, deep learning, and immersive metaverse experiences. However, one of the most exciting, high-potential fields of AI would have to be computer vision.

What is computer vision? Also known as machine vision, computer vision is computer-based image recognition. This field of AI allows machines to derive meaningful information from all forms of visual inputs and then make observations or recommendations based on what it "sees”.

You'd be surprised at how fast the computer vision field is advancing. Organizations are doing things now that were thought impossible ten years ago. If you have an abundance of visual data and the right technology, there's no limit to the business use cases you can address with computer vision.

Computer Vision = New Possibilities

Every day, 2.5 quintillion bytes of data are created. Considering how many images, videos, and other visual data are generated and disseminated at high volumes, there's no end to potential computer vision applications.

Already, computer vision is opening up business opportunities in a multitude of industries. Manufacturing, retail, energy, utilities, insurance, architecture, and even healthcare organizations are employing computer vision models for a variety of purposes. As a result, the market for computer vision is expected to reach $48.6 billion in 2022.

With an increasing number of companies leveraging this field of AI, the time is now to think about launching a project. If you put off getting started, you risk falling behind in your industry. Plus, you might miss out on chances to solve ongoing business challenges. This is something you can’t afford to do. If you start exploring possible use cases now, you can secure a unique advantage and gain a leg up on the competition.

Here’s an example to add some clarity. Consider how many car manufacturers are in a mad dash to beat others in the sector by offering the first mass-produced autonomous vehicle. Each company is tweaking and improving its computer vision models to make sure they can accurately discern and identify traffic signs, vehicles, pedestrians, and roads. Being first to market offers companies a huge advantage, which is why you should start exploring what computer vision can do for your operations.

Computer Vision = More Business Opportunities

Computers are getting better at recognizing visual objects and patterns. Over the last decade, object identification has advanced from 50% to 99% accuracy, thanks in part to new hardware, architecture, and algorithms that enable computers to more accurately make sense of multidimensional data.

This is no small feat, and it’s sparking the imagination and creativity of companies worldwide. In fact, a wave of innovation activity is currently taking place in the computer vision space. More and more businesses are pioneering new and novel business use cases for the technology, such as:

  1. Discerning permeable versus nonpermeable cover on potential real estate investment sites
  2. Analyzing foot traffic in retail to inform pathways, focal points, display orientation, and more
  3. Reviewing backlogs of video to identify trends or anomalies
  4. Using geospatial data to evaluate property size, material, condition, and surroundings for insurance coverage pricing
  5. Detecting anomalies in images for cancer detection and diagnosis
  6. Monitoring construction sites to detect potential risk hazards

Any one of these computer vision applications can enhance and automate an area of business operations, boosting productivity, increasing efficiency, and saving costs. If you were a product manufacturer, for example, you could use the technology for more than component identification and categorization on the line. You could develop a computer vision application that spots mechanical issues for predictive maintenance purposes, limiting the downtime and additional costs associated with breakdowns.

Think about how you could apply a similar concept to your company. If you could teach a computer to "see," what could it do with your data? How could you improve your company? The possibilities (and benefits) of utilizing computer vision are endless.

Computer Vision Applications = Real Benefits

When you do arrive at the right business opportunity, it can provide a number of advantages for your operation. With computer vision, you can:

1.Facilitate simpler, faster business processes.

Modern computer vision applications go beyond scanning text-based documents or using natural language processing to interpret words. The technology can discover patterns and anomalies in images that, up until now, have required human interpretation. This allows companies to process huge quantities of images at a fraction of the time it would take humans to do the same.

Take Keller Williams, for example. The real estate franchise wanted to move its business model toward iBuying where predictive analytics would estimate property values to aid in the buying and selling of homes online. KUNGFU.AI was brought in to develop a proprietary model that could predict a home's value based on thousands of structured and unstructured features. Broker input could be used to train the model for a given market.

Currently, the system is being piloted in three markets, and it's generating a new revenue stream for Keller Williams.

2.Prevent costly or dangerous problems

Computer vision applications can be combined with predictive models to anticipate issues or problems that may occur later down the line. Catching even a small issue can minimize the risk of an accident and eliminate the expenses associated with replacing damaged or broken equipment.

WM, the leading provider of waste management services in the U.S., saw the need to improve the safety of its operators, particularly those that ride on the back of rear-load waste collection vehicles. Should a rear-end collision occur, it could easily lead to the injury or death of anyone riding on the back.

The company engaged KUNGFU.AI to aid in the development of a computer vision model that could detect oncoming risks and trigger an alert. Our team began working on a custom-built device featuring computer vision models and state-of-the-art detection and segmentation frameworks that could easily be deployed through the Google Cloud Platform. To better predict the potential risk hazard of oncoming traffic, we also built a threat prediction model to calculate the speed, velocity, and distance of vehicles. This would allow the embedded sensor to trigger an alert.

The WM Early Alert Rear Safety Device was first tested in a safe environment before full deployment. Testing revealed a detection rate of 0.05 second per frame, and tracking and scoring also took 0.05 second per frame. Together, KUNGFU.AI and WM created a highly accurate computer vision application that could anticipate dangerous collisions and save lives.

3.Create better products and services.

Products with computer vision are no longer just tools that automate rote human processes. Instead, they’re imbued with sight — an additional “sense” — that allows for the continuous intake of new information and subsequent adaption to the surroundings. This results in products and services that have greater utility.

For instance, embodiment, sometimes referred to as embodied AI, uses a combination of machine learning, computer vision, and other subsets of artificial intelligence. It allows computers to observe and interact with environments similar to the way people do.

Embodiment can also be used to enhance simultaneous localization and mapping. With SLAM, you could take a video of a room and use computer vision capabilities to recreate an accurate 3D reconstruction of the environment. Should that technology be implemented in a robot, it could maneuver the area without ever having stepped foot in the environment before.

4.Reduce costs

During the industrial revolution, society used machines to automate rote tasks and reduce labor costs. However, labor-intensive jobs that require vision to perform the task correctly were left to the human workforce. With computer vision, these tasks can now be automated and allow companies to reduce costs.

A billion-dollar collectibles company came to us with a business challenge: Augment its process for identifying rare coins. A great deal of human time and effort was spent inspecting low- to high-value coins. The company wanted to speed up the process and increase its revenue by expanding the markets it could address at scale.

Our team got to work training a computer vision algorithm on a subset of 500,000 images of rare coins. A prototype application was also built for users to upload images of rare coins for identification. In two weeks of development, our computer vision application began identifying that subset of rare coins with over 90% accuracy.

Depending on your computer vision project, other benefits will present themselves. It all comes down to where you're employing the technology and what you hope to gain.

Starting Computer Vision Projects

Computer vision can automate long-standing, human-intensive manual processes. But the technology has the potential to unlock a myriad of other business opportunities for your company. The abundance of data now available, especially visual data, can go a long way toward helping you facilitate faster business processes, improve products and services, and innovate a particular industry of your operations.

We partner with clients to help them identify feasible and highly impactful business use cases. KUNGFU.AI can help you advance the cause of computer vision internally and drive organization alignment by making the case for impactful, strategic implementations of AI.

You can trust our team to deliver strategy, model development, model implementation, and transformation. We spend time learning your specific business challenge, technical environment, goals, team, competition, and more. Once we thoroughly understand your company, we can start building a computer vision model that moves the needle for your business.

If you’d like to learn more about computer vision or what KUNGFU.AI can do for your business, we welcome you to download our computer vision whitepaper. We’d also love the opportunity to talk with you directly, so please feel free to reach out today!

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