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Optimus Prototype: Assessment of the brain’s ability to process danger

Optimus Prototype: Assessment of the brain’s ability to process danger

tech innovation 2022

a research team from University of Leicester Optimus has developed a prototype using AI to track the human brain’s ability to track and process threats.

tracking participants’ eye movements

The brain’s ability to track and process threats will be determined against an inventive artificial intelligence (AI) tool in a novel interdisciplinary research study conducted by scientists at the University of Leicester (UL).

Researchers in the School of Computing and Mathematical Sciences have collaborated with visual perception experts from UL’s Department of Neuroscience, Psychology and Behavior to design the study, which measures how each participant’s eyes are immediately exposed to a number of rapidly escalating threats. will track the activities.

This research aims to contribute to the development of the next generation of rail safety equipment, which is currently being built as part of an Innovate UK Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP) between Leicester experts and systems engineering specialists Synoptix.

Optimus Prototype: Machine Learning and AI-Based Object Detection System

The Optimus prototype was initially installed at a Network Rail-powered level crossing near Cheltenham earlier this year. The technology uses machine learning and an AI-based object detection system – hosted locally on a small edge-based device – to identify and calculate different types of traffic.

It is noted that this novel interdisciplinary aspect of the project means that researchers can compare both the accuracy and speed of detection ability of a human completing the same task. This is believed to be the first study to compare humans and AI for the function of ‘visual senses’ in this way.

“The question asked on the project was ‘How good is good?’ With regard to the performance of the Optimus system at the crossing,” explained George Leite, KTP Research Associate within the Center for Artificial Intelligence, Data Analytics and Modeling (AIDAM) at UL and development leader of the machine learning aspect. Project.

“I believe the results of this study will give us some valuable insight into the question, first how well humans are at current work, and second whether our current system lives up to human standards. This is the first time an AI-based system will be validated against a standard in this way, opening the door for other systems to be validated through a similar method.”

Comparing AI and Human Performance to Understand the Human Brain

Dr David Souto, Dr Doug Barrett and Dr Claire Hutchinson make up the team of Leicester psychologists who lend their expertise to the study.

“We are really excited to be involved in this interdisciplinary work. Comparing AI and human performance in this way will help us better understand how the human brain identifies and weighs visual information so that we can see what is happening around us.” — to safely navigate the nearby world,” said Dr. Claire Hutchinson, associate professor in experimental psychology at UL.

“Synoptix is ​​pleased to have the opportunity to work with both the Leicester School of Computing and Mathematical Sciences and the Departments of Neuroscience, Psychology and Behavior on this breakthrough study,” said Stephen Majors, Project Lead at Synoptix.

“The results of this will be critical to helping our project team validate the performance and effectiveness of the Optimus Prototype System and its AI model, when compared to a human-based approach to the census.”

“We feel very privileged to be part of this collegiate working group as we seek to push the boundaries of this project that has the potential to become a market leader in AI and data analytics; not only will it have a huge impact on AI technologies , but it has real significance in being a fully interactive element to enhance security in Network Rail infrastructure,” concluded Justin Mountjoy, Program Director at Synoptics.

Contribute to Pedestrian Safety

According to Network Rail, which is responsible for the country’s rail infrastructure, there are about 6,000 level crossings in the UK. Figures from 2019 to 2020 show that there were 316 near misses with pedestrians and two pedestrians killed at UK level crossings.

The Optimus prototype was installed in January 2022 at a site on a cross-country route and has identified hundreds of thousands of movements at crossings, including pedestrians, cyclists and other road traffic. Since the detection and classification of users occurs locally on the device – and the only data sent is the traffic number and type – the privacy of Crossing users is protected in line with data protection guidelines.

Synoptix provides multi-disciplinary systems including engineering support in a variety of technology industries. The organization is certified by the Railway Industry Supplier Qualification Scheme (RISQS) for the provision of systems and safety engineering consultancy to the rail industry. KTP is funded by Innovate UK.

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Optimus Prototype: Assessment of the brain’s ability to process danger

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