Video Analytic False Claims

Author: John Honovich, Published on May 09, 2008

Numerous wildly inaccurate claims on video analytics were made in today's Dallas News.

The negative impact of such fictional claims is a threat to security and our industry.

Here are 3 of the worst claims from the article:

1) "These systems will reduce crime by several orders of magnitude," said Dr. Bruce Flinchbaugh, director of TI's Video & Image Processing Laboratory.

Reducing something by several order of magnitudes means a decrease of 90% to 99.9%. Does anyone, outside of Dr. Flinchbaugh evidently, really believe that video analytics are going to essentially wipe out crime? Perhaps he was quoted out of context?

2) "The way a tourist circles the base and gazes up at the tower is different than the way a would-be climber does. The tourist is relaxed. The climber is tense," said [NICE VP of Sales] Mr. Teegardin, whose company works closely with TI. "We have taught the program what to look for."

Can NICE's analytics really differentiate between a person who is relaxed and a person who is tense? Can NICE really differentiate between how people glance? I suspect that what this analytic does is monitor some form of loitering (taking this quote literally what they are describing is a research project, not commercial technology). If it is loitering, that could be valuable for one of the world's greatest landmarks. At the same time, the false alert rate must be very high. Such a rate may be acceptable given the security needs and budget for the Eiffel Tower but certainly not to the school systems that might want to use for similar purposes.

3) All of Olympic Centennial Park in Atlanta could have been evacuated long before the pipe bomb exploded in 1996.

Get Video Surveillance News In Your Inbox
Get Video Surveillance News In Your Inbox

Think about how hard it would be to even get the camera coverage necessary to cover an area like the Olympic Centennial Park. It's a very large outdoor space so you can't simply mount camera to the roof. You will have to mount them on poles, lots of them, fixed cameras too. Covering more than a fraction of such a facility is not feasible.

Even with that fraction, abandoned object detection is one of the hardest analytics to have work accurately, especially given the dense activity in such locations and the need to trigger an alert very quickly.

As an industry, we must have better and more honest communication. This is perhaps the most important objective I have for this site. It is just too hard to find accurate information and it is to the detriment of all of us.

Most Recent Industry Reports

Axis Secretly Paid Anixter Sales People To Push Axis NVRs on Sep 26, 2016
Internal Axis communication shows how Axis paid Anixter and Tri-Ed sales people with secret bonuses to push Axis NVRs. In this report, we examine...
VLANs for Video Surveillance on Sep 26, 2016
Many people confidently say to 'use VLANs' as an answer to IP video networking problems and as a way to signal expertise. But how should VLANs be...
Ambarella CEO Admits H.265 and 4K Not Popular on Sep 26, 2016
Ambarella is the main chip provider for high-end surveillance cameras driving higher resolution and new CODECs. While Ambarella has been pushing...
Nest Cam Outdoor Tested on Sep 23, 2016
After years of claiming an outdoor model was "coming", addressing their biggest user demand, Nest has finally released their Outdoor Camera, an...
ACTi Refuses Race To The Bottom, Shifts To Solutions on Sep 23, 2016
The original low cost IP camera disruptor was ACTi. Back in the 2008 - 2010 time frame, Taiwanese manufacturer ACTi challenged the Western and...
You Get Robbed, Canary Will Pay You Up To $1,000 on Sep 22, 2016
Canary is trying to break the status quo in DIY security, first by raising over $40 million, and now a revamp of their monthly services package...
Milestone Ends Development of "Enterprise" VMS on Sep 22, 2016
Milestone 'Enterprise' was one of the first enterprise video management software offerings, selected by many early adopters of IP video. However,...
History of Video Surveillance on Sep 22, 2016
This is a concise history of video surveillance covering the past decade.  The goal is to help professionals newer to the industry understand...
Access Control Course Fall 2016 on Sep 22, 2016
IPVM offers the most comprehensive access control course in the industry. Unlike manufacturer training that focuses only on a small part of the...
Totally Wireless IP Camera (IPVideo Corp NomadHD) on Sep 21, 2016
Wireless battery powered cameras have been a surveillance pipe dream for years, limited by camera power consumption, battery technology, and...

The world's leading video surveillance information source, IPVM provides the best reporting, testing and training for 10,000+ members globally. Dedicated to independent and objective information, we uniquely refuse any and all advertisements, sponsorship and consulting from manufacturers.

About | FAQ | Contact