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We got an email from Claudio Berti from GETCOO, a startup specialized in Computer Vision solutions, where he introduced us to their upcoming PIQABRICK project as seen in the video above. The proposed hardware & software would allow you to take “any” LEGO brick and identify it, then linking to reseller sites like BrickLink, BrickOwl or BrickScout in order to track, value or purchase parts.
It’s a combination of hardware & software, with custom machine vision and is supposedly capable of identifying multiple pieces in a single image, which would reduce the tedium of doing parts one at a time. Since the project isn’t on KickStarter or anywhere else yet, we don’t know pricing or timeline for availability.
The box uses an 8 megapixel camera and connects to both Mac and Windows machines using a USB 3 connection. It seems it will require an internet connection (for your computer) in order to connect to their web-based dashboard.
While I think it’s a pretty cool idea, I think the target market is pretty small. It’ll be ideal for sellers on the various markets and maybe some hardcore collectors who need help identifying parts.
If it works as well as it seems, it’s a remarkable achievement in the machine learning/vision aspect. Having the parts be identifiable from most angles would seem to be a challenge. When I was researching this as an app idea the articles suggested that the learning database would have to be huge in order to get accurate results.
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