Seeing in the Dark

The following is reposted from the January 14, 2010 issue of ASEE First Bell.

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Toyota Developing Night Vision System Based On Insects.

Popular Science (1/14, Hsu) reports that engineers at Toyota have developed a night vision system using a “new digital image-processing algorithm” that “takes inspiration from nocturnal dung beetles, bees and moths that can see across a remarkable range of color, brightness and shadow.” The system, which requires only “a standard digital camera and typical PC graphics card,” is reportedly capable of capturing “full-color images at night from a car moving at high speeds, and can even adapt to light levels automatically,” thereby eliminating issues “with the sudden blinding bright lights of an oncoming vehicle.” The design stems from research done by Eric Warrant of the University of Lund in Sweden, who “was first to create a mathematical model describing how ‘local adaptive spatiotemporal smoothing’ works.”

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