Learning from Outdoor Webcams: Surveillance of Physical Activity Across Environments
Publicly available, outdoor webcams continuously view the world and share images. These cameras include traffic cams, campus cams, ski-resort cams, etc. The Archive of Many Outdoor Scenes (AMOS) is a project aiming to geolocate, annotate, archive, and visualize these cameras and images to serve as a resource for a wide variety of scientific applications. The AMOS dataset has archived over 750 million images of outdoor environments from 27,000 webcams since 2006. Our goal is to utilize the AMOS image dataset and crowdsourcing to develop reliable and valid tools to improve physical activity assessment via online, outdoor webcam capture of global physical activity patterns and urban built environment characteristics.
This project’s grand scale-up of capturing physical activity patterns and built environments is a methodological step forward in advancing a real-time, non-labor intensive assessment using webcams, crowdsourcing, and eventually machine learning. The combined use of webcams capturing outdoor scenes every 30 min and crowdsources providing the labor of annotating the scenes allows for accelerated public health surveillance related to physical activity across numerous built environments. The ultimate goal of this public health and computer vision collaboration is to develop machine learning algorithms that will automatically identify and calculate physical activity patterns.
KeywordsWebcams Physical activity Built environment Crowdsourcing Outdoor environments
This work was funded by the Washington University in St. Louis University Research Strategic Alliance pilot award and the National Cancer Institute of the National Institutes of Health under award number 1R21CA186481. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the National Institutes of Health.
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