Denis Laurendeau is Professor at the Faculty of Science and Engineering in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering and Director of the Vision and Digital Systems Laboratory at Université Laval.
Where does your passion for science and engineering come from, especially computer science?
My interest in science and engineering goes back to high-school where a comrade introduced me to astronomy. We then created an observatory on the roof of Collège St-Charles-Garnier and observed the comet Kohoutek that few people saw. My interest in computer science has grown through my bachelor's degree in Engineering Physics with a summer internship at a Defense Research Lab in British Columbia.
What technological innovations have impressed you most recently?
The developments in artificial vision are particularly impressive and current applications (vehicle control, contextual alertness, metrology) coupled with artificial intelligence are revolutionizing the daily lives of millions of people. Breakthroughs in genomics and DNA sequencing are also noteworthy and pave the way for the treatment of many genetic diseases.
How does artificial vision affects and will affect the development of cities?
We can perceive the artificial vision negatively because of the "big brother" connotation which is generally associated with it. However, the vision has many other uses such as the autonomous management of traffic congestion, parking management, driving autonomous vehicles or the safety of citizens for the detection of falls on the sidewalks or in public places.