Visual Urban Sensing

Speaker: Nikhil Naik

Date: Tuesday, November 01, 2016

Time: 12:00 PM to 1:00 PM Note: all times are in the Eastern Time Zone

Public: Yes

Location: 32-D507

Event Type:

Room Description:


Contact: Katherine Bouman,

Relevant URL:

Speaker URL: None

Speaker Photo:

Reminders to:

Reminder Subject: TALK: Nikhil Naik - Visual Urban Sensing

Place and time: Tuesday 11/1, 12-1 pm in 32-D507

Speaker: Nikhil Naik, MIT Media Lab (

Title: Visual Urban Sensing

Social scientists are extremely interested in understanding (i) the relationship between urban appearance and the behavior and health of urban residents; and (ii) the relationship between urban change and socioeconomic composition, as well as government policies. Thus far, studying these questions has proved challenging due to the fact that researchers need to conduct expensive and time-consuming field surveys to evaluate urban appearance.

I will introduce two computer vision algorithms that harness Street View imagery to computationally evaluate urban appearance. The first algorithm, Streetscore, is able to quantify the appearance of a street block from its Street View image by measuring attributes such as perceived safety, wealth, and beauty. The second algorithm is able to compute an "urban change coefficient" which quantifies the growth or decay of a location from time-series Street View images obtained over several years. This approach allows us to generate cross-sectional and longitudinal data on urban appearance at street block-level resolution and global scale, massively scaling up the size and scope of research in this area.

Related Material:

Research Areas:

Impact Areas:

This event is not part of a series.

Created by Katherine Bouman Email at Friday, October 28, 2016 at 9:41 AM.