Professor Philip Torr joins us as Chief Scientific Advisor

Professor Torr leads the University of Oxford’s Torr Vision group, a global, state-of-the-art research team comprising 25 post-doctoral and PhD students doing pioneering work in the field of machine learning for computer vision.

FiveAI, funded in July 2016 by Amadeus Capital Partners, Kindred Partners and Notion Capital, has established its goal to deliver the safest solution for Level 5 autonomy in driverless cars and other autonomous vehicles.  Level 5 autonomy describes vehicles operating safely in complex urban environments without any driver involvement whatsoever. Current commercially available systems are classed as Level 2.

After achieving his PhD in the field of computer vision at the University of Oxford, Professor Torr’s career includes pioneering work in computer vision at Microsoft Research both in Redmond, WA and Cambridge, UK before returning to academia at the University of Oxford. His work covers fields such as object recognition, 3D reconstruction, tracking, and scene understanding and attracts the highest honors in the field of computer vision, including the biennial ICCV Marr Prize. Professor Torr is regularly awarded top paper status at the most prestigious computer vision conferences including IEEE CVPR, ECCV, ICCV and BMVC, as well as receiving honorary mentions at NIPS machine learning conferences.

“We’ve made tremendous advances over the last few years in our field of computer-vision,” said ProfessorTorr. “We have developed advanced techniques that deliver superior performance to human abilities on many perception tasks that are crucial for autonomous driving. I’m very excited to be working with such an accomplished team of engineers and business leaders that can build on our research to make autonomous vehicles a reality on a global scale.”

Commenting on Professor Torr’s appointment, Dr Stephen Allpress, co-founder and Chief Technology Officer of FiveAI, said: “We are thrilled to be working with Professor Torr and it’s a huge advantage that we can access a deep technology base to help power and guide our technology platform. Cutting-edge perception capabilities are a crucial element of realising Level 5 autonomy, meaning that we need to go well beyond the relatively simple task of reliably recognising other vehicles on a highway. Instead we must accurately perceive all possible dynamic agents in the scene, including pedestrians and cyclists, with a vastly superior precision-recall performance and at normal road speeds in different lighting and weather conditions.

“Professor Torr’s group is recognised as a global authority in the vital science of computer vision and its expertise will be vital as we work to achieve this ambitious goal. His contribution and supervision of FiveAI’s work in computer vision will be a key ingredient to ensure we can deliver the safest autonomous vehicle technology in the world.”