Carnegie Mellon University
May 10, 2016

Axis Communications collaborates with CMU to engage faculty and graduate students with IP video and analytics

Axis Communications, the global leader in network video, today announced an educational collaboration with Carnegie Mellon University (CMU), a leading global research university, designed to enable faculty and graduate students to explore innovative uses and applications of network video through software development. Since the fall, professors and graduate students of CMU’s College of Engineering dedicated time outside of their regular coursework to utilize IP video technology to address a variety of challenges.

Limited only by their imaginations, the students selected projects without any influence from Axis. One of the main goals of the collaboration is to provide the students with the creative freedom to look at existing technology in new ways. For many, the program is also an introduction to a growing, yet unfamiliar, industry. 

“It’s a learning experience for both parties. CMU students learn about the technology, while we learn of new ways our products can be used to create a smarter world,” said Rob Muehlbauer, Senior Manager, Business Development Partner Ecosystems, Axis Communications, Inc. “The innovative, resourceful and creative thinking of young minds is the key to our industry’s continued evolution and success. Anything we can do as market leaders to generate interest is a win for the physical security industry as a whole.”

Axis products are built on open technology standards, allowing the students to create third party applications like any software developer using the AXIS Camera Application Platform (ACAP). These applications can be downloaded and installed on Axis IP cameras and video encoders – much in the same way smartphone users download apps. 

“Axis is proving to be a significant partner for CMU, not only by making their cameras available, but also by providing technical know-how on how to best leverage the hardware,” said Bernardo Pires, Project Scientist, Robotics Institute, CMU. “In recent years, computer vision has become proficient in many vision analysis tasks, such as detect and track people, vehicles or objects. Traditionally these algorithms were run on desktop or server hardware. Axis is positioning itself to be the leader in pushing that innovation and intelligence to the camera.”

Some of the IP video applications produced by CMU students include:

  • City Planning: This two-year project uses cameras to analyze bicycle traffic in intersections. In the first phase of the project, a single intersection will be monitored. In its second year, the students will participate in the planned deployment in downtown Pittsburgh. 
  • Drone Technology: This group created a mobile radio laboratory (which included Axis cameras) to learn how cellular signals travel through the air and reflect off the ground. By doing this they are hoping to gain a better understanding of how ground based networks communicate with drones that are flying in the air. 
  • Facial Expression Technology: CMU’s Human Sensing Laboratory(HSL) develops advanced computational tools to model and understand human behavior from sensory data, such as video. Students used Axis cameras to analyze the emotion of the person standing in front of the machine (see video). HSL sees potential applications for this type of technology in the fields of human health, computer graphics, machine vision, biometrics and human-machine interface. 

For more information about third party applications available on Axis products, please visit