A new model of vision

When we open our eyes, we immediately see our surroundings in great detail. How the brain is able to form these richly detailed representations of the world so quickly is one of the biggest unsolved puzzles in the study of vision. Scientists who study the brain have tried to replicate this phenomenon using computer models of vision, but so far, leading models only perform much simpler tasks such as picking out an object or a face against a cluttered background. Now, a team led by MIT cognitive scientists has produced a computer model that captures the human visual system’s ability to quickly generate a detailed scene description from an image, and offers some insight into how the brain achieves this. “What we were trying to do in this work is to explain how perception can be so much richer than just attaching semantic labels on parts of an image, and Continue reading A new model of vision

Integrating electronics onto physical prototypes

MIT researchers have invented a way to integrate “breadboards” — flat platforms widely used for electronics prototyping — directly onto physical products. The aim is to provide a faster, easier way to test circuit functions and user interactions with products such as smart devices and flexible electronics. Breadboards are rectangular boards with arrays of pinholes drilled into the surface. Many of the holes have metal connections and contact points between them. Engineers can plug components of electronic systems — from basic circuits to full computer processors — into the pinholes where they want them to connect. Then, they can rapidly test, rearrange, and retest the components as needed. But breadboards have remained that same shape for decades. For that reason, it’s difficult to test how the electronics will look and feel on, say, wearables and various smart devices. Generally, people will first test circuits on traditional breadboards, then slap them Continue reading Integrating electronics onto physical prototypes