Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Must-see Workshops @ CVPR 2013

June is that wonderful month during which computer vision researchers, students, and entrepreneurs go to CVPR -- the premier yearly Computer Vision conference.  Whether you are presenting a paper, learning about computer vision, networking with academic colleagues, looking for rock-star vision experts to join your start-up, or looking for rock-star vision start-ups to join, CVPR is where all of the action happens!  If you're not planning on going, it is not too late! The Conference starts next week in Portland, Oregon.

There are lots of cool papers at CVPR, many which I have already studied in great detail, and many others which I will learn about next week.  I will write about some of the cool papers/ideas I encounter while I'm at CVPR next week.  In addition to the main conference, CVPR has 3 action-packed workshop days.  I want to take this time to mention two super-cool workshops which are worth checking out during CVPR 2013.  Workshop talks are generally better than the main conference talks, since the invited speakers tend to be more senior and they get to present a broader view of their research (compared to the content of a single 8-page research paper as is typically discussed during the main conference).

SUNw: Scene Understanding Workshop
Sunday June 23, 2013

From the webpage: Scene understanding started with the goal of building machines that can see like humans to infer general principles and current situations from imagery, but it has become much broader than that. Applications such as image search engines, autonomous driving, computational photography, vision for graphics, human machine interaction, were unanticipated and other applications keep arising as scene understanding technology develops. As a core problem of high level computer vision, while it has enjoyed some great success in the past 50 years, a lot more is required to reach a complete understanding of visual scenes.

I attended some the other SUN workshops which were held at MIT during the winter months.  This time around, the conference is at CVPR, so by definition it will be accessible to more researchers.  Even though I have the pleasure of knowing personally the super-smart workshop organizers (Jianxiong Xiao, Aditya Khosla, James Hays, and Derek Hoiem), the most exciting tidbit about this workshop is the all-star invited speaker schedule.  The speakers include: Ali Farhadi, Yann LeCun, Fei-Fei Li, Aude Oliva, Deva Ramanan, Silvio Savarese, Song-Chun Zhu, and Larry Zitnick.  To hear some great talks and hear about truly bleeding-edge research by some of vision's most talented researchers, come to SUNw.

VIEW 2013: Vision Industry and Entrepreneur Workshop
Monday, June 24, 2013

From the webpage: Once largely an academic discipline, computer vision today is also a commercial force. Startups and global corporations are building businesses based on computer vision technology. These businesses provide computer vision based solutions for the needs of consumers, enterprises in many commercial sectors, non-profits, and governments. The demand for computer vision based solutions is also driving commercial and open-source development in associated areas, including hardware and software platforms for embedded and cloud deployments, new camera designs, new sensing technologies, and compelling applications. Last year, we introduced the IEEE Vision Industry and Entrepreneur Workshop (VIEW) at the IEEE Conference on Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition (CVPR) to bridge the academic and commercial worlds of computer vision. 

I include this workshop in the must-see list because the time is right for Compter Vision researchers to start innovating at start-ups.  First of all, the world wants your vision-based creations today.  With the availability of smart phones and widespread broadband access, the world does not want to wait a decade until the full academic research pipeline gets translated into products.  Seeing such workshops at CVPR is exciting, because this will help breed a new generation of researcher/entrepreneur.  I, for one, welcome our new company-starting computer vision overlords.