Dr Zygmunt Szpak

Dr Zygmunt Szpak

Postdoctoral Research Fellow

What are you working on?

I work at the interface of computer vision, machine learning and challenging industry problems, developing algorithms that allow computers to perform tasks typically associated with human intelligence, by perceiving the world in three dimensions and reasoning about images’ content.

My colleagues and I are empowering Australian companies with smart technologies that allow them to innovate, compete globally and stay profitable. We’re also having tremendous community impact.

For example, I developed a hand-held medical device that can quickly and accurately measure the size, volume and depth of wounds and determine how well they’re healing, simply by taking and analysing pictures of them. The device is currently being used by vascular surgeons at the Royal Adelaide Hospital as part of a clinical trial.

How did you come to be here?

I was introduced to computer vision and image processing by Professor Jules Tapamo, an inspirational lecturer at the University of KwaZulu-Natal in Durban, South Africa. I completed a master’s degree under his tutelage and came to Australia to pursue a PhD.

Before I arrived here, I had an opportunity to attend a machine learning lecture series presented by Professor Ernest Fokoue, from New York’s Rochester Institute of Technology. This sparked my imagination and convinced me that I wanted to work at the interface of machine learning and computer vision.

I started my PhD at the University of Adelaide in late 2009 and completed it in 2013, then stayed on as a postdoctoral researcher at AIML (then the Australian Centre for Visual Technologies).

What do you like about AIML?

It’s constantly stimulating. AIML’s a gateway to working with leading companies and organisations across the globe on exciting real-world projects that require innovative solutions. Our research draws on a diverse skill set encompassing computer science, mathematics and statistics, and every project provides an opportunity to discover rich new avenues of knowledge.