Week 13 – AWS DeepLens

This week, we got our hands on the AWS DeepLens smart camera, which Amazon claims is “The world’s first deep learning enabled video camera for developers”. Simply put, the DeepLens is a webcam attached to an Intel powered single-board computer with Wi-Fi capabilities and USB-3.

The AWS DeepLens Image Courtesy of Amazon.com

The first step of setting up the DeepLens is fairly simple. Connect it to a monitor or TV, hook up a mouse and keyboard, boot it up and connect it to Wi-Fi. It runs on Ubuntu OS-16.04 LTS by default, so the process of logging in and setting up SSH is simple. It can then be disconnected and remotely operated from your own PC. Now that you have it set up utilizing Amazon’s own instructions which are much clearer and more detailed than these, you can run different applications on it remotely, such as their default image recognition application, which seemed to only understand the words “Computer Monitor” and “chair”. However, is the $200 price tag at the time of writing really justifiable, or can a $35 Raspberry Pi and a small camera do the same thing? Stay tuned to find out.

Small cameras like this one at $12 can be attached to a Raspberry Pi, which should yeild a similar hardware setup (for these purposes) to the DeepLens

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