LONDON A subsidiary of Oxford, England based Oxford Metrics Group (OMG) is set to introduce a device designed to help Alzheimer's disease sufferers cope with memory loss that has been in development at Microsoft's Cambridge, England-based research laboratories.
OAG is best known as the group behind the motion-capture technology used in Hollywood films.
Microsoft's SenseCam technology was highlighted earlier this year at an open day held in Cambridge.
The wearable camera has a wide angle, fish-eye lens that automatically takes photos at pre-set intervals, typically 30 seconds. It also has several sensors other than the image sensor embedded, including infra-red, heat, heart rate and pressure to record health monitoring data, as well as tri-axis MEMS-based accelerometers.
An SD card stores the data and the camera is controlled by a Microchip PIC microcontroller.
"The camera can passively record patients' daily events. As they review the footage, this sparks recollections, much better than any diary could, and this can help treatment," Microsoft researcher Steve Hodges said at the event.
The device, developed jointly with Microsoft over the past five years by OAG subsidiary Vicom, will be previewed at the annual Neuroscience Conference in Chicago on 17-21 October.
"This IP license agreement means we're the first company to be able to deliver Microsoft's ground breaking technology to a wider audience. All of us at OMG look forward to working closely with Microsoft and the researchers that have been using SenseCam Project technology and continuing to move it forward," commented OMG's chief executive Nick Bolton.
He added the Vicon Revue, as the device will be known, could also be used for other applications, noting that there has been interest in exploring the use of the device to act as "a black box for soldiers."
Andrew Herbert, Distinguished Engineer and Managing Director, Microsoft Research Cambridge said, "Microsoft's willingness to license intellectual property arising from its research enables partner companies to bring innovative products to market. This agreement represents the next stage in the life of SenseCam and will bring the device to a broader community."