Development of the Image Recognition Application - Computools

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Development
of the Image Recognition
Application

industry: Software & Hi-Tech

One of the most interesting properties of the human brain is the ability to respond to an infinite number of environmental stimuli through unique reactions. Perhaps, exactly perception allowed people to achieve the highest level of living matter existence, which is expressed in the ability to think and actively reflect the objective world in the form of images, concepts, judgments, etc. That’s why our customer decided to discover a new truth: not only a human can recognize external incentives and respond to them. With the help of our team of developers, he proved that even smartphones have excellent perception.

Machine Learning in the innovative project

To demonstrate how modern technologies can percept real objects, we developed a special MeterSnap project based on Machine Learning. It is an Android application which recognizes meters, and captures readings and serial numbers via a mobile phone camera. MeterSnap captures the readings and a serial number, and then tries to find a pre-registered user in the database to add a record about fixation of the readings to the user’s history. Using this application, it’s possible to make a fixation of subscriber’s readings just in a few simple steps. All you need is a mobile phone with a camera which can distinguish details in poor lighting.

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How does this app work?

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  • The application recognizes the readings and serial numbers of any types of meters by editing configuration files.
  • One of the main features is that MeterSnap performs the recognition process in real time. In other words, you don’t need to take photos, just run the application and point a camera (just like QR code). This ensures that during recognition process the application determines the same readings on the meter in each frame.
  • There is the ability to view a detailed history of fixing the readings for each user. According to the history, you can create a histogram of the use of electricity between the fixations of the readings.

Additional features

  • The app supports geolocation services for confirming a location of "shooting" in order to avoid falsification of results.
  • All cut out image frames with actual photo of the readings and a serial number are stored.
  • The app has a unique design with a great variety of custom components.

Machine Learning Engineering Challenges

The process of perception is very complex and not fully understandable even for humans. So, try to imagine how difficult it is to learn a machine which hasn’t a brain. Our team of developers accepted a great challenge!

It was necessary to learn the networks to detect a recognition object and serial number on the image, and select the character area. Then, the app should confirm that each meter belongs to a particular person. The client also wanted to introduce a feature of app profiling to work with different meters.

Solutions

We used the method of a contour analysis that narrows the number of meters, which the application can potentially work with, to presence of a key contour ("anchor"). It is an object that has a unique contour (in most cases, a black box) around the numbers with the readings.

Based on the geometry of the anchor, we implemented a technology which calculates the location of the serial number and accurately recognizes it.

Registering the location of a particular meter in the database, tracking the shooting location, and comparing all known meter data, the app can easily determine the owner of a certain meter.

We transferred all the parameters, which the recognition process may depend from, to the configuration file, and determined parameters for each supported meter with the possibility to choose an operational meter. This procedure allowed us to introduce the useful app profiling feature.

Eventually, we overcome all the challenges thanks to our perseverance and ingenuity! :)

Happy Customer

As you see, we developed a very useful Android application based on Machine Learning which can easily recognize meters, captures readings and serial numbers. Our customer provided a society with the ability to receive important data on various meters quickly and precisely. Thanks to our effective cooperation, the truth about unlimited cognitive possibilities of machines, particularly about their excellent perception, was discovered!

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Project technology

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