‘Our Digital Imaging Futures’
Dates – Day 1: Friday 16th January 2015 9am – 9pm, Day 2: Friday 30th January 2015 9am – 8pm (Funding awarded on second day)
Digital imaging has a huge impact on many aspects of our society, from early disease detection to forensic identification, disaster recovery to climate change visualisation. Whilst still a relatively young field, we have seen dramatic advances and innovations, including 4D imaging, laser scanning, and markerless motion systems, as well as software algorithms and systems for image processing, recognition, analysis and visualisation. There are potentially significant global markets that are predicted to rise, for instance in medical imaging alone there is a predicted rise to $35.5bn by 2019 from 2013 of $24bn . It is clear that digital imaging is critically positioned at the forefront of research across many sectors and it has the capacity to fundamentally help the human race.
Design can play a pivotal role in capitalising and facilitating innovation, as well as taking ideas and realising their commercial potential. ‘Our Digital Imaging Futures’ TAC brought world-renowned scientists and designers from the University of Dundee together with businesses, industry and user-led organisations (ULO’s) in order to capitalise on our collective assets (e.g. knowledge, patents, networks, reputation). With Dundee being named as one of the UNESCO ‘Cities of Design’ around the world this event presented a timely opportunity to examine the impact Design can have on research emanating from the University of Dundee.
Digital Imaging has been identified as an enabling technology and whilst being highly diverse it has a range of discrete sub-sectors and many applications (for a wide spectrum of very diverse, existing and future applications). Here are a few key areas that have been identified as particularly critical and timely at this junction:
1) Making visualisation technology small, smart and portable more cost efficient, and open enough to enable widespread adoption the world over. As costs continue to decline we can consider the small size and low power requirements of new technologies e.g. miniaturisation of robots, labs and sensors. These can offer possibilities for moving many automated, diagnostic or analytical activities out of fixed, centralised, facilities and provide real-time information to, for example, health staff at surgeries, civil engineers, and climate scientists, people in urban environments and across remote locations.
2) Digital Imaging for decision-making and action and communication in contexts that have critical consequences. By intelligently filtering the ever-increasing volumes of data, which might include pattern recognition, data mining, machine learning can we improve prediction techniques? Can new image and video analysis algorithms and tools unlock image rich source of data? Might we understand and provide simpler, accurate, and more accessible images or communicate complex relationships and provide reliable, consistent measurements? Could we usefully incorporate ‘poor or incomplete’, ‘unreliable’, and ‘uncertain’ data?
3) Connected Intelligence and Intelligent interfaces where digital imaging moves beyond the screen – i.e. remote sensing, noninvasive and automatic monitoring and real-time insights, wearable technology for embedded and personalized care for people. Enhancing reliability, flexibility, and usability. There are benefits for people and business. People become better informed and equipped to influence the ways they experience or plan and business has real-time connections to the physical world that allows faster and more intelligent responses.
In attendance at this Chiasma were academics at University of Dundee with specialist knowledge and/or applications for digital imaging e.g. medicine, genetics and omics, biomedical imaging, biotechnology and biometrics, forensic science and identification, 2D-4D imaging, environmental, agriculture and geotech, civil engineering, computing science, HCI and mathematics (big data, statistics and modeling), psychology, orthopaedics and dentistry. Businesses (Commercial and Industry partners, Manufacturing, Sciences, Design, consultants) Organisations (Charities, User-Led Organisation’s, NGO’s, Civil Service).
In addition we invited leading researchers and businesses in design with interests in interaction, animation and visualisation, mobile and physical computing, games theory, wearables, and sound. We required expertise in user-led experiences, processes and methods, agile development, prototyping (low-fi and state of the art), design, ethnography and social science methods.
See the ‘Business Opportunity’ section of the Call for Participants/Terms of Engagement document for more details.
Chiasma Image Credits: Duncan Singleton, Flows, image by Lindsay Perth.