Monday, January 21, 2013

The biggest competitor you never heard of

The auto components company Continental “has 1,300 employees working on automated driving, many of them in software development” according to industry publication Wards Automotive.

Wondering why you should care?

Well many of those folks are beavering away on vision-related challenges, like detecting the white lines on the road or differentiating between a child about to run in front of a car and a mailbox. They’re probably also working on how to do it fast and with very high reliability.

Thirteen hundred employees. That’s a lot of vision R&D effort. Think what you could do with that kind of resource. And it makes me wonder:
  • How can we leverage that effort? Do you think Continental would license some of their algorithms?
  • Why didn’t one of the big machine vision companies get in to the auto world first? Yes, I know hindsight is 20/20, but this has been coming since the first DARPA challenge.
  • And third, what happens if they decide to use their vision expertise in manufacturing?

No comments: