How Intelligent Video Detects Objects

March 2, 2011 by Nathan Miloszewski

Intelligent video applications work by:

  1. Detecting objects.
  2. Segmenting different shapes/objects into areas of interest.
  3. Classifying the objects by type (person, vehicle, object).
  4. Characterizing objects by color, size, direction of travel, or motion.

After this information has been processed, user defined rules can determine if a car is traveling the wrong way, someone is entering a prohibited area, or if an object is left behind (security threat). 

If these rules are broken, alerts and alarms can automatically notify you of an event taking place.

Below, I’ve outlined some of the advanced intelligent video applications.

Object Counting

Count the number of objects behaving in a certain way (something/someone moving in the wrong direction) or tally up the number of certain objects in a scene.

People Counting

Retail stores can place cameras directly above an entrance (camera placement is important for accuracy) and use people counting to know the number of people entering or exiting that particular area.  People counting can also be used for:

  • Customer Traffic:  Enter/exit statistics, popular aisles, measure success of merchandising displays.
  • Queue Management:  Count the number of people standing in line at a counter – Improve customer service by avoiding backups.
  • Tailgaiting:  For businesses that have access control, have the intelligent video system send an alert if more than one person enters an area with only one card swipe for a controlled door.

Crowd Detection

Intelligent video systems can send you an alert if a crowd gathers in an area so that personnel can avoid overcrowding and reduce risks in the case of any emergency or evacuation.

Crowd detection will count the number of people in the user defined area and send an alert if that number exceeds the limit you’ve set.

Object Tracking

In the security situations where it’s important to keep track of where objects or people are at in a complex, object tracking can follow the object as it moves around in an area or as it passes from camera to camera.

Digital Fence

Also known as a tripwire or vitural fence, the digital fence application allows you to set a boundary.  You can designate a line or an area and then instruct the system to notify you if anyone crosses that line.  The system can be further customized to send alerts for movement in a certain direction.

That is, it may be okay for employees to exit the premise but if someone tries to come back in, an alarm notification can be sent.

Another example is, a digital fence can be set up so that if someone steps on to a subway track an alert can be sent.

Object Left Behind

To maintain security and reduce the threats of explosives, this application is important to security staff to be alerted if a package or bag is left behind or is left stationary in an area longer than it should, an alarm notification is sent highlighting the potential concern.

Similarly, if a person is loitering in an area longer than necessary, security personnel can be notified.

There’s More

Intelligent video has many capabilities that can be customized to your application’s unique needs.  There are more features such as license plate recognition and facial recognition but those warrant their own posts which I’ll get into next time.

In the meantime, if we can be any help with your intelligent video questions and surveillance system configuration please call us at 866-885-4853.

Compatible IP Cameras

A few IP cameras well suited for intelligent video functions are:

  • Axis
    • Axis Q1755
    • Axis P3301
    • Axis Q1910
  • Sony
    • Sony SNC-CS50N
    • Sony SNC-DF80N
    • Sony SNC-RX550N

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