ACDH Lecture 3.1



7. March 2017 - 17:00


Theatersaal, Sonnenfelsgasse 19, 1010 Vienna


Björn Ommer
University of Heidelberg, Germany

Visual Analytics: Enabling Images to Speak for Themselves 

How would research in the humanities benefit if computers could handle images just as competently as they presently process text? What if performance would improve even further?

Presently, computers can process images only on a low level, such as pixel by pixel or based on textual annotations. Given vast amounts of visual data, there is however a dire need for a much more intuitive access to individual images and a more effective handling of large image corpora. After all, one of the main challenges we face is finding and setting related artifacts into perspective although they are in different, otherwise unrelated corpora. In short, the image analysis that is presently available to the humanities needs to be upgraded from the equivalent of a typewriter to that of a highly versatile content processor.

This talk will discuss the challenges along the way towards artificial vision systems that can adequately support the humanities. Moreover, we will analyze the potential of machine vision for the humanities—and also the competences the humanities can offer to vision and machine learning.