What survived the axe at HP Labs
Will Hurd face new boardroom lie detector?
Last week we reported that Hewlett-Packard's research arm, HP Labs, has undergone a restructuring process to better make a buck from its technology developments.
Along with the announcement, HP Labs erected some booths to let press and analysts ogle select projects that emphasize its newly-discovered bottom line.
Let's take a look.
Facebubble: Have you seen this boy?
Our first booth at HP Labs is Facebubble, a facial recognition application developed to help organize family photography. The stand-alone app catalogs images based on the people contained in them.
After analyzing the photographs stored on a PC, a person who appears in multiple images is automatically assigned a button in the main menu. The more photographs that contain a particular person, the more prominently that button is shown. Clicking on the person serves up all the photos in which they are featured.
For instance, if we needed some photographs of baby Jeffery, stat:
Clicking on the tot's grinning visage brings up all the photos the application recognizes him in.
Ta-da. Ask me about my grandchildren 2.0.
HP admits the technology isn't perfect yet. Various forms of headgear can still fool the application, and getting the software to reliably recognize a person's appearance over several decades proves elusive.
The researchers also envision the application as a useful tool for online social networking. One day it could be easier than ever for a prospective employer to find photographs of you shirtless and drunk. Huzzah!
HP BookPrep: to serve man
A few other vendors have on-demand book publishing projects in the works, but the HP Lab angle is more about converting out of print books into a digital format.
BookPrep uses HP Labs imaging technology to take scans of old books and automatically clean up the image. Scanned text is flattened, and pages are tidied and brightened for consistent coloration.
HP Labs says the platform would let publishers put books of yesteryear back into print with a greatly reduced upfront investment. And on-demand publication means vendors only need as many books as customers have already ordered.
HP also thinks there's a market for customized books. A person could scan in Aunt Flo's cookbook along with their personal improvements and additional recipes. Of course there would have to some restrictions on what HP will let customers change. Legal issues aside, nobody wants to open a copy of Harry Potter and see some hack's erotic fan-fiction attached in the center.
OK, maybe if it's tastefully done...
Next page: Conversa: say that to my face
Apparently they've outsourced
To MIT's Media Lab.
What survived the axe at HP Labs?
Clearly the correct answer to the headline is...
I couldn't believe the author didn't point out that HP went into their sensory deprivation research cocoon and managed to emerge, about 3 years late to the party, with a you tube knock off!!! GOOD GRIEF!!!! If anyone at HP had ever USED the Internet surely they would have been too embarrassed to show this in public.
Granted I've always fairly well hated HP. So in one respect I get great entertainment from this article. But on another level this stuff is pitiful. It's no fun to outrun the guy in a coma, and clearly HP's EEG is flat lining. Other than letting some executive administrative assistant bureaucrat build a collage of terrorists photos I really can't imagine what they are thinking.
Skipping over the worthlessness of these offerings for a moment, they don't even have a channel to sell this crap. I don't recall ever seeing HP branded software in Walmart. But I'm sure they will be just as proficient at mass marketing as IBM was; do they even have a customer valued at less than $10M in sales? -- Please no need to mention the quasi-PCs they dump into the retail chains for the indiscriminating masses to browse..... Hmm.... wait for it.... YOU TUBE!!! HA! I knew they got the idea somewhere!
No Paris logo, she's way too smart for HP.
nothing to see here - move along
This article is nowhere near as funny as the Xerox one.
Can HP stop being so boring please.
How about a story about Samsung - they seem to be throwing lots of money at printing - just make sure it's funny.
(Should be plenty to go on - wot with sluch funds and the like).
I don't think so. Sure, at least one of HP's projects seems a little far out, but when you look at all that's going on within the company, the dust seems further away than only a quarter ago. They suddenly appear to have a finger in every pie. Speaking as a shareholder, the message is clear. Buy more HPQ.