3M announces web-based Visual Attention Service

New internet service from 3M quickly and accurately predicts the visual impact of creative work. 3M today announced the launch of its new Visual Attention Service (VAS), using the Windows Azure platform from Microsoft. The new Web-based service from 3M makes it possible for designers to test the effectiveness of their content using visual attention models which are based on algorithms that predict where a viewer’s attention will go in a scene. The technology has potentially significant applications in advertising and in particular POS.

Photos, creative content, packaging concepts and all manner of creative media can be evaluated in different scenes or contexts. Users simply upload images to VAS from their web browsers. Then application’s processing engine evaluates the image for its “visual saliency” and returns a map of the image that indicates, using markings such as those seen on a heat map, which areas of the images are most likely to attract viewer attention.

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