Deep North (formerly VMAXX), a Silicon Valley startup with offices in China and Sweden, hopes to leverage artificial intelligence (AI) to prevent violence and “other safety issues” facing schools. Today it announced a program that will offer a select number of institutions the opportunity to field-test its threat-detecting object recognition and computer vision technology.
It’s already working with school districts and universities in Texas, Florida, Massachusetts, and California, and it has the backing of U.S. Congressperson Pete Sessions (R-TX). “AI represents one of the few viable ways to make schools safe, and does it in a way that is more affordable than any other,” Sessions said in a statement.
Not unlike Amazon Web Service’s Rekognition, IBM’s Watson Visual Recognition, and Microsoft’s Azure Face API, Deep North’s platform applies an intelligent layer to conventional, off-the-shelf security cameras (with resolutions as low as 320p), analyzing footage as it comes in. It monitors, detects, and interprets people’s in-frame behavior and movements across settings, and it identifies objects — e.g., unattended bags or objects that look like a weapon — that might pose a danger to students and staff.
School administrators receive alerts when a potential threat has been identified.
The patent-pending tech, which was originally engineered for brick-and-mortar retail, leverages cross-camera tracking that scans crowds and monitors “areas of special concern,” such as entrances, exits, and gathering areas. Deep North claims its technology doesn’t share any personally…