Body Labs Co-Founder Michael J. Black Inducted as Foreign Member of Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences

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Dr. Black recognized for his leadership in advancing body modeling and computer vision sciences

Black’s research on optical flow have been used in Academy Award Hollywood films.

Body Labs (bodylabs.com), the provider of the world's most advanced technology for analyzing the human body's shape, pose and motion, announced today that Michael J. Black, Body Labs co-founder and board member, will be inducted as a foreign member of the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences.

Black — who pioneered the creation of a statistical model of human shape and pose, which fuels Body Labs’ predictive body shape analytics platform — was elected last year to the Academy responsible for awarding the Nobel Prize in Physics and Chemistry. He was inducted on May 11, 2016.

Founded in 1739, the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences objective is to promote the influence of the sciences in society. In addition to the Nobel Prize, every year the Academy also awards the Sveriges Riksbank Prize in Economic Sciences, the Crafoord Prize and a number of other large prizes. This prestigious appointment recognizes Black’s record of scholarship, including fundamental contributions in optical flow estimation, neural prosthetics, and human shape and motion analysis.

“This appointment is a great honor, and I am pleased to receive this recognition from the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences,” said Michael J. Black, Body Labs co-founder and board member. “We believe that our research on computer vision and the human body’s shape, pose and motion will power the next frontier in mass customization and product personalization.”

Black is a founding director leading the Perceiving Systems Department at the Max Planck Institute for Intelligent Systems. Body Labs continues to have exclusive licenses to technology developed initially by Black’s group while a professor at Brown University and then later at the Max Planck Institute. This technology includes the statistical model of the human body — which contains machine learning algorithms and the world’s most robust database of human shape and pose — to accurately digitize 3D body shape referencing third-party 3D scans or physical measurements.

Black’s research on optical flow has been used in Hollywood films including the Academy Award winning effects in “What Dreams May Come” and “The Matrix Reloaded.” Black is also the recipient of the 2010 Koenderink Prize for Fundamental Contributions in Computer Vision and the 2013 Helmholtz Prize. His work has received an Honorable Mention for the Marr Prize in 1999 and 2005. Black’s work has won several paper awards including the IEEE Computer Society Outstanding Paper Award (CVPR'91) and has also contributed to several influential datasets including the Middlebury Flow dataset, HumanEva, and the Sintel dataset.

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