Advanced Imaging


Advanced Imaging Magazine

Updated: January 12th, 2011 09:49 AM CDT

EMVA 2008

History and machine vision meet in Berlin

By Barry Hochfelder

Berlin is an interesting city. Walking around you see buildings that are old, very old and new, often next to or across the street from each other. Some of the new even is designed to look old. The German capital was the site of this year's European Machine Vision Association (EMVA) Business Conference on April 11 and 12. The event attracted about 180 attendees from 20 nations.

All of the modern technology was juxtaposed with history. The conference venue was in the former East Berlin, a few short blocks from the Brandenburg Gate and some sparse remnants of the Berlin Wall. Signs of World War II damage, both physical and emotional—a moving Holocaust Memorial is practically in the shadow of the Reichstag—were everywhere. I also found it interesting to learn that the Berlin State Opera House, built by Fredrick the Great around 1742, was destroyed and rebuilt twice during the war—reopening in 1942 and again in 1955, 10 years after the second bombing.

Anyway, please forgive the musings of an armchair historian. Let's get back to the EMVA conference. Attendees heard a number of interesting presentations, ranging from the influence of academic research on the development of the German machine vision industry (Prof. Robert Massen of Baumer Inspection) to automotive industry trends and their implications for vision technology (Prof. Ferdinand Dudenhöffer, Center for Automotive Research) to new processor technologies for machine vision (Rob Giesen, National Instruments). And that was just the first day. There was information on the Italian vision market (Ignazio Piacentini, Italian Machine Vision Group), the vision market in Israel (Reuven Weintraub (GiDEL) and a look at how machine vision is used in security (Dr. Hervé Borrion, University College London Centre for Security and Crime Science).

The EMVA now has 105 members from 18 countries, including Israel, Turkey and Japan. It continues to be active with AIA (Automated Imaging Association) and JIIA (Japan Industrial Imaging Association) in coordinating standardization activities on the global level. EMVA also is in cooperative talks with CMES (Chinese Mechanical Engineering Society) and CSIG (China Society of Image and Graphics).

For more on EMVA's activities, including case studies, a glossary, statistics and a recap of the conference, visit its newly redesigned web site at

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