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Sustainable Smart Campus

Facial Recognition for Library Services

Facial Recognition access graphicThe Library has joined a campus-wide effort at developing projects for a Sustainable Smart Campus as a Living Lab. We and ITSC are collaborating with Professor Qifeng Chen with development being done as a guided learning project by HKUST students.

This project seeks to enhance users’ Library experience by using facial recognition technology as an optional (voluntary opt-in) alternative to a campus ID card for Library access and counter services. This should reduce crowding at entrances, improve security, and improve user satisfaction. Library patrons frequently need to delay entry to take out and orient their IDs to enter the gates.  Using facial recognition should reduce this delay, and streamline the entry flow.

Security and privacy are very important issues. Facial recognition services will be opt-in only and all system data is stored and managed within the University and accessible only by designated staff.

The pilot versions rolled out in February, 2019, for use at the ground floor entrance gates, and we plan to expand it to all entry gates on the ground floor and LG1 over time. If it goes well, a pilot pilot version for borrowing may be ready next year.

The Library is also exploring using facial recognition for attendance taking at library classes and events. As the facial recognition system is developed, it will also be used for opt-in campus services beyond the Library.


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last modified 07 March 2019