How to Use Technology in New Ways

During a seminar in Switzerland, I sat next to a gentleman who was directing a ship into one of Greenland’s harbors via his phone. He didn’t speak to anyone, instead using his phone to see the harbor, identify the position of the ship and communicate online with its captain.

I was pretty impressed. To me, it was a brilliant example of how to think out of the box and use existing technologies in new ways.

There are more examples of technology being used in new ways with video recordings that traditionally have been used to protect people, buildings and other assets. The future for the use of video, however, points in another direction.

Eventually, video technology will work closely together with technologies within artificial intelligence and IoT combined with powerful computers operating over networks with huge bandwidth – a mix that can make our world safer, create better customer service and make companies more productive.

A new report from Accenture shows that companies who successfully apply artificial intelligence could increase profitability by an average of 38 percent by 2035. Perhaps this figure doesn’t take exponential factors into consideration, but I think those companies who do not choose this path will have difficulties surviving.

Talking about intelligent video technology, we’re facing a wealth of new opportunities. Traditionally, video systems have been analog; CCTV surveillance cameras used an analog video signal transmitted via a coaxial cable back to a video recorder or a monitor: systems without intelligence and thus quite limited.

However, when video material is recorded digitally it can be combined with video analytics, which is object recognition compared to potential activity in the video recording. In the scenario of a big crowd in front of a stage being monitored by the software, unexpected activity that matches predefined parameters (such as the crowd exceeding the allowed number of people) activates the notification system, an alarm goes off and the event is suspended.

And think about what happens when cameras can record spectra other than visible light. This opens up many more helpful scenarios.

3D Football Match

During a visit to Japan earlier this year, I met a design group that was creating a virtual camera for recording soccer matches; 40 high-resolution cameras are installed in the football stadium, and all video feeds are combined into a 3D model in real time, where the cameraman is virtually on the pitch, during the match, being able to see what the goalkeeper or the referee is seeing at any given time.

Making a 3D model in real time is not really a difficult mathematical problem. The only issue is the vast amount of data to be calculated, and the synchronization between the cameras needs to be very precise. Today, powerful computers can handle this, so perhaps the soccer matches in the 2020 Olympics will be an even more exciting experience.

These are examples of a small part of the technologies, such as IoT, AI, super computers and video, that are becoming available today. On their own, they are all interesting. However, it is the synergies between them that will change our world.

We need to become far better at understanding the business potential in these new technologies, focusing on innovation and thinking out of the box. To do this, we need to train the next generation of innovation competencies. Only by doing this will we be able to make our footprints in the intelligent, digital future.

By Hans Jorgen Skovgaard, VP of Research, Development and Support, Milestone Systems