Pioneers in machine learning for visual recognition and founders of facial recognition software developer Kriegman-Belhumeur Vision Technology (KBVT), Professor Peter Belhumeur and Professor David Kriegman, have been hired by Dropbox.
Aditya Agrawal, VP of Engineering at Dropbox told Josh Constine of TechCrunch that Dropbox is in need of such expertise as the amount of photographs uploaded by Dropbox’s 300 million users is growing exponentially. “The ability to organize, curate, and make sense of the memories”, Agrawal stated, could prove to be highly valuable for the company.
A Stanford Ph.D, Kriegman brings in his experience with robotics, computer graphics, face recognition, object recognition and more recently, Pattern Analysis and Machine Intelligence. Belhumeur’s work as computer science Professor and Director of Columbia’s Laboratory for the Study of Visual Appearance has seen him research computer vision, face recognition, and machine learning for visual recognition.
In an effort to systematically categorise and ‘make sense’ of an ever-growing photograph ecosystem on Dropbox the duo will be let loose to study the current infrastructure and decide on the next best step. Agrawal believes that the scope of such an undertaking is still being refined. He surmises that one such application, for instance, could be when the user can “tag [photographs] with metadata about what’s in them.”
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“The reason why researchers are gravitating to these big companies is that the time is right to build some really cool shit,” he said.
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(Image credit: Loïc Dupasquier)