Gary Overett博士毕业于澳大利亚国立大学（澳洲大学综合排名第一），目前在中山大学-卡内基梅隆大学联合工程学院 (以下简称JIE）担任助理教授。他的主要研究方向是计算机视觉，移动机器人和无人驾驶汽车。
在近些年，越来越多的创客基地在中国诞生。Overett博士告诉我们，在卡内基梅隆大学同样有非常多的创客基地。学生们经常自己做一些有趣的东西比，如3-D打印机和机器人。他们互相之间交流并分享观点，这种分享能够让他们迸发出更多好的想法。当听说SME也在筹建自己的开放实验室， Overett觉得能够参与进去也是很有趣的。也许他们实验室的技术会对SME Lab有帮助，同时他也能从SME Lab中发现更多优秀的学生并把他们吸纳到自己的团队中去。
Dr. Gary Overett received his PhD degree in Computer Science at Australian National University (Top 1 University in Australia) and is now an assistant professor at SYSU-CMU Joint Institute of Engineering. His research areas are mainly on Computer Vision, Mobile Robotics and Autonomous Driving.
Speaking of Dr. Overett’s research area, he stresses that Robotics and Computer Vision are now growing very quickly. His job mainly focuses on understanding the scene that Robots are interacting in, especially road scenes. One of the companies who is doing a similar job is Mobile Eye, an Israeli company. For instance, their camera could automatically detect an obstacle, read road signs and tell you how far the front car is. What is more，Dr. Overett mentions that his major focus is on the perception of autonomous driving, using camera and computer vision algorithm. He also wants to combine other sensors such as LIDAR, which can provide 3D information of the world in a robust manner, as well as combining inertial sensors. These sensors can perceive the motion of vehicles very accurately. They are better than GPS in picking up the motion of the vehicle in 3D and the acceleration of the vehicle. Dr. Overett says they want to use these sensors to get the location and mapping for autonomous vehicles. The map contains all the static information, including trees, power poles, road signs and so on.
It is believed that the US is still leading the area of robotics and computer vision. Google is perhaps the most far ahead in autonomous driving applications. Tesla is also developing an autonomous system for their electric cars. And in each two weeks, the recognition accuracy of the autonomous driving system is growing very fast. Dr. Overett thinks China is now working very rapidly in these areas. He noted that when he was in IEEE International Intelligent Symposium in Xi’an, he found many strong groups doing research in autonomous driving. However，in China, it is a problem to put academic research into industry utilization. Every year, the Chinese government spends huge money on academic research while only a very small part of them can help industry go further. According to Dr. Overett`s experience, he said before he came to JIE, he worked in an Australian group (National Information and Communication Technology Australia Ltd, NICTA) who wanted to move academic research into industry applications.
Dr. Overett believes that the key idea is to combine the academic research teams with commercialization engineers to form a joint team. Academia and industry have different goals. Academia focuses more on publications but industry gives their more attention to implementation and engineering. Dr. Overett mentions that in CMU, there is a fantastic culture of entrepreneurship and innovation. The students and professors in CMU have the belief that they really can run their own company successfully. In addition, there are many big companies like Google, Microsoft and Uber have on-campus research and development institutes in CMU. And the university is trying to educate graduates whose techniques can fit those big company’s need. Dr. Overett thinks the pattern used in CMU can be realized here in Guangzhou because SYSU is surrounded by many big companies and he is looking forward to working with local industry companies.
In recent years，more and more maker spaces can be found in China. Dr. Overett tells us that in CMU, there are many maker spaces. Students are making cool stuff like 3-D printers, Robots and so on. They communicate with each other and share ideas to motivate them to create something fantastic. When hearing that SME is planning their own open lab, Dr. Overett thinks that he is very interested to get involved. Maybe the technologies in his lab will be helpful for SME and, on the other hand he can find some excellent students in SME lab and attract makers to his team.