How Perceptual Computing Enables an Entire New Class of Imaging Applications

3D sensing technology is a key technology to making human-machine-interaction (HMI) natural, and intuitive. This “Perceptual Computing” adds human-like sensing and intelligence to machines, and enables them to sense, understand, interact, with their environment and users and to learn from one interaction to the next.

End user control schemes either passive or active such as touchless control via eye tracking, gesture, and facial recognition enables a whole new class of consumer products, security features, safety and industrial solutions. 3D sensing is now ready for the leap into the mass market, creating future technologies -with turnkey technology, affordable economics, and market demand.


Perceptual Computing has the capacity to enable new intelligent applications for drones, industrial robots, home robots, and other consumer devices. Coffee machines will be able to recognize and identify users and their preferences; individuals will be able to control devices with gestures as they would interact with another person. Cleaning robots will be enabled to map their surroundings; intelligently maneuver through an apartment, avoiding obstacles, or be able to detect valuables like earrings and act accordingly. Virtual and Mixed Realities in the field of gaming and virtual collaboration will be enabled by Perceptual Computing merging real world objects intuitively into artificial ones blending the edges of realities. 3D sensing technology in industry will enable robots to “pick-and-place” objects mimicking their human co-workers while avoiding any collisions with them while in motion. Consequently, human and machine interaction will become natural and productive. Drones will achieve the ability to track people and recognize obstacles; merging many forms of technology and data streams surveillance and security applications can intuitively use depth information to navigate and monitor changes to the environment for the interpretation of many situations.

New 3D sensing products, like the Intel® RealSense™ Technology line, improve perceptual imaging and enable a whole new level of Embedded Vision capability. The Intel® RealSense™ Technology is based on stereo vision. Two camera images are recorded in the infrared range and then search for identical pixels on both images. The distance between the two sensors is triangulated, thus determining the depth information of the respective pixel. This technology enables OEMs and vision engineers, without baseline development, to easily implement human-like 3D sensing in their applications. Imaging and vision experts, including existing value-added distributors and system integrators, can assist customers using 3D sensing technology, to bring cutting-edge applications to realization, and, to allow machines to see and think.


Intel® RealSense™ Technology is a suite of components that, when integrated into a device or machine, enable it to comprehend and interact with its environment in a truly 3-dimensional way. This machine vision suite provides compact design and high-quality depth sensing based on a dedicated vision processing ASIC. The platform is power optimized, and is equipped with quick USB connectivity. The product line includes a stand-alone vision processor with enhanced depth functionalities, multiple turnkey depth modules, cameras, optimized SDK, software, and tools.

At the of Forefront of Cutting Edge Applications

170911_RealSense_D435_Perspective_View_v1Imaging and vision engineers, with newly available out-of-the box kits, benefit from ready-to-use components with which to bring 3D technology into their applications. Development cycles can be minimized and a faster time to market is possible. Intel®’s RealSense™ Depth Camera D400 series can be added easily into existing prototypes, via USB. High image-resolution, high frame-rates, and the integrated IR projector, allow innovative applications for both indoor and outdoor environments where typical 3D solutions would fail. The SDK enables very easy development for vision and new to vision developers alike. Depth data is generated in the embedded processor and can be passed to the host where resources can be dedicated to interpreting and processing the depth data. The Intel® RealSense™ SDK is available in Windows OS, Linux, and others. It provides sample code, debugging tools, and evaluation programs to accelerate vision projects.

Depth modules and vision processors provide turnkey solutions for rapid product development and integration. These solutions make Perceptual Computing as easy as possible for OEMs and product manufacturers working in VR/MR applications, industrial robotics, home robotics, drones and smart surveillance. With a variety of depth modules available system designers and vision experts have the ability to choose a device that best suits their application, power consumption, the need for an IR projector, field of view, and shutter type.  Intel® vision processors can be integrated with customer-specific cameras. The Intel® RealSense™ ASICs process raw image streams from multiple to compute high resolution 3D depth maps, without the need for a dedicated GPU or host processor. This integrated solution can increase the performance of your system’s host processor significantly.

The New Normal

Perceptual Computing based on 3D depth-sensing technology will quickly find its way into a wide range of products, devices, entertainment, applications and solutions. The technology combines the capture of information with their interpretation. Sensor technology is key as it provides image data to an device in 2D and 3D. The next step is a powerful processor chip which analyzes the data and makes decisions. Depending on the application, this can be either a GPU, a FPGA or an ASIC. Intelligent algorithms can be implemented on these platforms to recognize objects, gestures or faces. In industrial environments, the technology supports the surveillance of production and transport processes for significant optimization. It can lead industrial robots and helps them to react with their environment, avoiding collision for a safe human-machine-collaboration and minimize injury risks. With Perceptual Computing, end customers will benefit from a new level of natural real-life user experiences, and vision developers will be able to create these applications very quickly on a quick to deploy yet powerful solution. Out-of-the-box kits like the Intel® RealSense™ suite of components will dramatically shorten development cycles and time to market, propelling Perceptual Computing to the vision standard of tomorrow.

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