Research into Sonification of Video/Depth Data (University Dissertation)

I have recently completed my Undergraduate Degree in Computer Science at Cardiff University. My final year project was on the topic of “Video to Audio Conversion for the Visually Impaired”.


The project was quite broad, research-heavy, and in an area that I had little experience in – so it was quite a learning experience!

Using an Asus XTION Camera to retrieve both RGB and Depth information from the environment, I experimented with ways of extracting shapes from the footage (in real-time), extracting various properties from these shapes (including Hu invariant moments and Elliptical Fourier co-efficients), using properties to calculate shape-similarity, and conveying this information in the form of audio.

I intend to write some posts detailing these individual topics, but in the mean time, if you’re interested, my dissertation can be downloaded here. As I mentioned, it’s a fairly broad, whistle-stop tour of the approaches I took in attempting to solve the problem posed, and is by no means a “ground truth”.

I’m returning to Cardiff in October as a PhD Student, working on another computer-vision related project.

Getting into VPS Hosting…

So, I have taken things a step further. I started off being interested in buying VPS machines – I then turned to low end Dedicated Servers, and now, I’m dabbling in hosting my own VPS machines.

To start off with, I am doing this not for profit. I will not be offering any formal support for my customers, and have negotiated a deal with RapidSwitch, who are providing me with a discount (because I’m not making any money from it). I will be offering OpenVZ VM’s to people on my University course for £5.00/m, with the following spec: 18GB hard disk space, 400MB Ram, 128MB VSwap, and 750GB Bandwidth.

I’ve chosen to use the OpenVZ Web Panel control panel software, as it is easy to use and free.

If this is a successful endeavor, then I may go on to provide commercial VPS’s to customers. Who knows!

You can probably expect some  OpenVZ/CentOS based posts in the not too distant future…

 

UPDATE:

I had to go with SolusVM, due to OWP’s lack of bandwidth tracking. This meant increasing the price by £0.50 to £5.50/m – however, I think the users are probably getting a slightly better experience with the commercial control panel.