Cognex acquires deep learning machine vision software company ViDi Systems
Cognex Corporation has announced that it has acquired ViDi Systems, a company that develops deep learning software for industrial machine vision applications, in a deal that was completed on April 4.
ViDi’s software—which has been recognized with both Platinum and Gold Innovators Awards from Vision Systems Design—uses artificial intelligence to improve image analysis in applications where it is difficult to predict the full range of image variations that might be encountered. Using feedback, the software trains the system to distinguish between acceptable variations and defects.
"The ViDi team is at the forefront of applying deep learning techniques to the real-world challenges of industrial machine vision," said Robert J. Willett, President and CEO of Cognex. "We are excited to bring this expertise to Cognex to broaden the scope of applications that can be addressed at a world-class level with Cognex vision."
ViDi Systems recently launched Version 2.0 of its ViDi Suite deep learning-based industrial image analysis software, which offers major advances in image analysis capabilities and speed from the previous version. ViDi Suite’s feature recognition tool, ViDi Blue, has added the capability of identifying and locating features regardless of size and orientation.
The new version also optimizes graphics processing unit (GPU) memory handling, providing a 30% to 50% reduction in training and processing (inference) time. Additional new features include the ability to offload image analysis to one or several remote computers in order to share valuable computing resources, as well as a new Training Application Programming Interface (API), which enables integrators and other application developers to add labeling and training capabilities to their own applications while maintaining a single consistent user interface (UI).
Upon closing, ViDi Systems became part of the Vision Products business unit of Cognex, where their software will continue to be developed and integrated into the Cognex product portfolio. The transaction, according to Cognex, is not expected to have a material impact on the company’s financial results in 2017 or 2018.
ViDi Systems is based in Villaz-St.-Pierre Switzerland and was founded in 2012 by Dr. Reto Wyss, a computational neuroscience Ph.D., and the CPA Group, a Swiss industrial holding company and business incubator. Dr. Wyss and ViDi’s team of engineers joined Cognex at the time of the closing on April 4, and Cognex will maintain operations at the company’s current site in Switzerland.
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