Interview with Arnold Smeulders, professor of Multimedia Information Analysis

Over the course of his distinguished career, Arnold Smeulders has made a lasting impact on the field of computer science by being pivotal to the development and large-scale application of image recognition software. The crowning achievement of his work came in 2014 when his spin-off company EUvision, which develops image analysis software, was acquired by global chipmaker Qualcomm industries.

Smeulders, professor of Multimedia Information Analysis, has been closely involved in the UvA’s Informatics Institute for over 25 years as a researcher, lecturer and former director.

What will be the biggest development in ICT in the coming years?

To predict the future, look to the past. Before 2000 the amount of available data was relatively small. This changed dramatically with the growth of sensors – from phones to eye scanners to cameras – which over the last five years has resulted in a flood of personal data. Such data, made up of digital numbers, can reveal key facts about an individual’s health, physical features or even socio-economic status and could be particularly useful in areas like healthcare. Once we begin to truly exploit these numbers and use deep learning to connect raw data and goals, many routine tasks, professional and personal, will be automated and enhanced. In future, the data will speak to us.

Read the full interview HERE

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