The introduction of this system enabled distance learning with greater satisfaction, fostering a sense of unity between campuses as well as teachers and students. We are planning to utilise this system in the future as a part of active learning tools that our university is promoting, and provide a learning space where students can learn initiatively and actively.
Director of public university corporation, Prefectural University of Hiroshima
The Prefectural University of Hiroshima was established in its current form in 2005, after the integration of three universities in the Hiroshima Prefecture.
The university has introduced an innovative and engaging remote learning solution that allows lectures to be viewed by students at three separate campuses linked by a secure VPN (Virtual Private Network).
At the heart of the solution is Sony’s REA-C1000 Edge Analytics Appliance. This award-winning device uses AI technology to process and enhance video content in real time, providing additional features for immersive teaching and learning that aren’t possible with conventional videoconferencing systems. Operation of the system is beautifully simple, with lecturers selecting different functions via an intuitive touchpanel without the need for complex adjustment of camera settings.
‘Handwriting Extraction’ analyses video footage captured with the ceiling-mounted BRC-X1000 4K PTZ remote camera, recognising the lecturer’s written notes and diagrams as they write on the board in front of the students. This extracted writing appears to ‘float’ on screen, giving a clear view even for students at the back of the room or on another campus. As well as enhancing the clarity of natural writing, it also gives students a clear view of what’s on the board, unobscured by the lecturer’s back as they write.
Footage captured by the BRC-X1000 also allows ‘Focus Area Cropping’, with a single camera providing two simultaneous views as separate video feeds: a detail-packed close-up of the lecturer’s expressions and gestures, together with a separate picture of the entire room.
A BRC-X400 4K PTZ camera in the lecture theatre supports ‘Close-up by Gesture’, automatically zooming in under control of the REA-C1000 to capture a student when they stand up to contribute or ask a question. In addition a compact ceiling-mounted SRG-120DU camera at each campus captures crisp Full HD images for web conferences or smaller seminars.