Not long ago, I wrote about an app called PetMatch that uses computer vision algorithms for image recognition purposes that enables a user to find a dream pet or find a lookalike to a previous pet, all in their area.
Now there is a new pet-related product called Bistro that also utilizes machine vision technology. Bistro is a cat-feeding device that has a motion-detecting camera that is activated when a cat steps onto the platform, which also doubles as a scale. When the camera is activated, it streams video to a server, which then runs a facial recognition algorithm on your pet. If there is a match, food is dispensed and your cat is free to feed. If not, the food remains in the hopper and the owner receives a notification via the Bistro app.
Weight sensors under the food and water receptacles also allow the system to track the pet’s daily consumption levels, according to Gizmag. With this system, Bistro can reportedly enable a user to track their pet’s food and water intake or health report all from their phone, as well as watch a live video stream of the cat eating, should they choose to do so.
The Bistro system is the first to claim to be able recognize individual cat faces using machine vision algorithms. The app is currently in development for iOS and Android devices, and the Bistro system itself is set to be commercially available in February 2015 for around $249.
This is just another example of computer vision algorithms and technologies being used outside of the traditional applications. Other applications include: