Turns Inexpensive Web Cameras into Sophisticated Security Systems for Homes and Businesses
Vitamin D Video is the first commercial application based on a new form of intelligent computing modeled after the human brain; innovators reach milestone toward bringing vision to computers
Vitamin D today released a beta software application that turns any inexpensive web cam or an IP camera into a sophisticated video monitoring system for home and business security. The simple do-it-yourself Vitamin D Video software, available at no cost during its public beta period starting today, improves on enterprise-level object recognition found only in video monitoring systems that cost thousands of dollars and require expert tuning and calibration. Vitamin D Video takes only minutes to set up, and enables anyone to turn massive amounts of video into a highlight reel of the specific events that are important.
Vitamin D Video is the first commercial application built using new technology for intelligent computing from Numenta, called Hierarchical Temporal Memory (HTM). Modeled after the functionality of the human brain, HTM gives application developers the ability to find patterns in massive amounts of information — such as hours or days worth of video — in ways that traditional computing cannot.
Running on a PC or Mac, Vitamin D Video can quickly distinguish between the presence of humans and other objects in live video streams. A simple rule builder allows people to filter for where objects are and how they are moving in the monitored video. For example, one can easily request the software to show every instance of a person entering through a particular door. The search results are conveniently organized into a daily highlight reel where hours of videos can be scanned in seconds, for certain events. People can choose to be alerted immediately of any particular event.
“Vitamin D Video has already proven to be highly valuable to our initial customers. Today we’re giving the rest of the world a simple way to add sophisticated monitoring to their home, business or institution,” said Celeste Baranski, chief executive officer of Vitamin D. “Everyone deserves to have peace of mind without having to pay an arm and a leg for it.”
“Vitamin D Video is a compelling first step in making real the promise of intelligent computing,” said Jeff Hawkins, co-founder of Numenta. “Vitamin D’s clever user interface combined with Numenta’s HTM technology enables anybody to do sophisticated security monitoring without the cost of expert technicians and expensive equipment. The application also is great fun to use. I anticipate people will find all sorts of fascinating new applications for web-enabled cameras.”
Filling a Market Gap
Vitamin D Video will fill a significant gap in the multi-billion dollar security and monitoring industry. A recent IP Video Market study showed the top three problems limiting the effectiveness of video analytics for security systems are false alerts, system maintenance and cost. Low-cost surveillance systems use unreliable motion detection plagued by false alerts, resulting in frustration and wasted video storage. It is common for moving leaves or lighting changes to produce a large number of unwanted results. Video analytics for enterprise-grade systems are very costly and often require expensive cameras that need expert tuning to eliminate false alerts.
Vitamin D Video meets these challenges by combining elegant interface design with exciting new core technology from Numenta. Unlike other object recognition systems, Vitamin D Video learns by example. It is trained with thousands of samples, enabling it to better identify an object irrespective of noise, lighting, occlusion and distortion.
Initially focused on video monitoring for security, Vitamin D Video lays the foundation for a new means of smart visual search, enabling powerful new applications in security, advertising, entertainment, and search.
Solves Many Types of Problems
For people interested in seeing what’s happening when they’re not around, Vitamin D Video is the simplest way to find out. During its initial private testing, individuals and businesses applied Vitamin D Video to a broad set of problems faced on a daily basis. For a grower of prized pumpkins in Los Altos, CA, Vitamin D Video returned 90% fewer false alerts than previous, more expensive solution in monitoring intruders to his pumpkin patch. For a hair salon franchise in the San Francisco Bay Area, Vitamin D Video helped monitor the number of customers being seated to help the owner keep track of actual versus reported revenue across multiple locations.
At a Silicon Valley high school, administrators monitored hallways that must be kept free of pedestrian traffic. The school, which already owns an expensive security system, chose to use Vitamin D Video because it offered a cost effective solution with flexible and easy set up. And a coffee house owner in San Leandro, CA, used Vitamin D Video to learn when and how her early morning pastry deliveries were disappearing.
HTM: A New Kind of Intelligent Computing
HTM is a memory architecture from Numenta inspired by the brain’s neocortex. It allows computers to learn and recognize patterns in very large amounts of complex data in a robust, accurate and scalable fashion. Vitamin D is the leading independent application developer on the Numenta platform, and is the first company to launch a commercial application to take advantage of the power of HTM.
About Vitamin D
Vitamin D was formed in 2007. The company brings elegant user experience design together with new artificial intelligence to create software that simplifies people’s lives. It is located in Menlo Park, CA.