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By Keith Reid
The new year has finally arrived, but before we get down to business with all the exciting things to come in the diverse universe of advanced imaging technology it's appropriate that we take a look at some of the highlights from 2006. There is no better way to do that, than through our 11th annual Advanced Imaging Solutions of the Year. Contest submissions have been rolling in for months, and you'll find the cream of the crop within these pages.
Were some extraordinary solutions overlooked? Undoubtedly. Given the structure of how this contest is run we have to work with what we receive. In some areas, like medical and scientific imaging, there was no shortage of submissions. In other areas, like machine vision, their were extraordinary solutions known to Advanced Imaging staff that were never submitted due to the fact that clients paid good money for solutions to get a step up on the competition and they had no desire to see them publicized. Such is the nature of the beast.
Still, the lineup we have is particularly strong. If you're a geek interested in space exploration, you undoubtedly came across the high-resolution images of Mars' surface in 2006 that were of such quality that you could not only see the Mars rover Opportunity but the shadow cast by its camera mast. You can find how that solution was facilitated within these pages. Similarly, if you're a big cricket fan, you can find out how infrared technology is being applied for the review of dismissals, with tests held during the Ashes series between England and Australia. You can find a child's toy that takes advantage of technology that once was the domain of military assault vehicles and aircraft. And, these are only a handful of the solutions covered in this issue.
Rounding out the rest of our editorial is a look at modern endoscope technology that makes noninvasive surgery even less invasive while boosting its effectiveness. Our Component Integration column offers another, and somewhat unique, look at the data path issues between digital and analog. Our Core Technology section covers image processing and illustrates that the frame grabber is still an innovative and effective choice in a range of applications. All in all, a pretty good way to start the new year.
Editor, Advanced Imaging