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Amazon introduces a deep-learning camera and AI video tools

Photo via Amazon

Amazon’s strange deep-learning camera is meant just for developers.

At its AWS re:Invent conference in Las Vegas this week, Amazon made a number of interesting product announcements, including several in the AI and deep-learning space. Amazon’s goal with all this: to make AI accessible to scientists and developers who may not otherwise have a background in these areas.

Notably, Amazon introduced DeepLens, a deep-learning camera for developers. DeepLens helps developers learn the basics of the machine learning technique known as deep learning, which uses neural networks to build on its past experiences and make predictions. The device comes with computer vision projects and tutorials, but it also gives developers real-world, hands-on experience about what deep learning can do—and how it can be useful.

Other cameras, such as Google Clips, use AI to make the photo- and video-taking experience more seamless for users, but this is a completely different camera-based AI integration.

On its product description page, Amazon gave a handful of examples of what you can do with the device. Clearly, someone at Amazon is a fan of the HBO show Silicon Valley.

DeepLens projects, including Hot dog or Not hot dog Screengrab via Amazon

Alongside DeepLens, Amazon showed off SageMaker, a service for easily deploying AI models. It can be used in conjunction with the DeepLens deep-learning camera, which AWS aims to ship in early 2018.

Amazon also introduced a handful of cloud-based artificial intelligence tools. This includes Amazon Rekognition Video, which can identify and track people in live video feeds. In what seems like an automated replacement for Amazon Turk, Amazon Transcribe transcribes audio recordings of people talking into text files. (This sounds incredibly useful for journalists, students, secretaries, and others who handle transcription on a semi-regular basis.)

Another new tool, Amazon Comprehend, listens in on speech and can identify positive or negative sentiment. It can also spot specific locations, people, and phrases within text. And building upon these ideas, Amazon also debuted a translation tool, Amazon Translate, which translates text from one language to another.

With all of these products at their disposal, we’re sure to see more and more apps, websites, and services begin to integrate deep learning techniques and AI for smarter experiences. “Hot dog/Not hot dog” is just the beginning.

H/T GeekWire

Christina Bonnington

Christina Bonnington

Christina Bonnington is a tech reporter who specializes in consumer gadgets, apps, and the trends shaping the technology industry. Her work has also appeared in Gizmodo, Wired, Refinery29, Slate, Bicycling, and Outside Magazine. She is based in the San Francisco Bay Area and has a background in electrical engineering.