You Will See a Hoopoe
Supporting Biodiversity and the Ecosystem

You Will See a Hoopoe

You Will See a Hoopoe

You Will See a Hoopoe

Birds play a vital role in the environment. With the rise of AI technologies, it has given HKUST community a perfect opportunity to discover the campus’ beautiful and vibrant side. Green AI cameras deployed at certain locations on campus can capture bird images and analyze the data, before sharing it with the public. Bird watching campus tours will be available for staff and students to get to know the richness of the biodiversity and the sheer beauty of our feathered friends. Edge AI workshops will be held, where students can have hands-on experience of using the technology, which can resolve privacy problems with the use of cameras. Besides, by launching crowdsourcing and labeling, people are encouraged to send in images of birds they take on campus and use them to train the AI model for bird detections and identifications of different species.

SDG Goal 15 - Life On Land

What is the problem this project is trying to address?

HKUST Campus is a perfect location for people to learn about nature. Yet, currently, there are insufficient opportunities provided to achieve that. Without understanding and learning about the campus, it is hard for the community to create a sense of belonging to the university.

1,200 species of birds are facing extinction in the next century, and many of them are suffering from severe habitat loss. In Hong Kong, one-tenth of the bird species are at risk of extinction. However, awareness on campus is yet to be raised regarding bird biodiversity protection.

Moreover, there are often problems regarding privacy when it involves cameras, which discourages photo-taking.

This project aims at increasing the community’s awareness of bird protection and the sense of belonging to HKUST in a smart way, without potentially compromising privacy.

How does this project support our sustainable smart campus as a living lab vision?

Biodiversity is essential for sustainability. This project reminds our community to stop our footsteps and admire the beauties of nature, thus promoting the environmental awareness of bird protection. By using advanced technology like the Green AI camera, which is the most advanced and smartest bird-watching system in Hong Kong, we can overcome constraints and constantly monitor birds, in order for us to get to know them and ultimately cherish them more.

What's next?

Based on the experiences learned from the two years of the project period, the team in the DESR Lab will continue to invent more powerful and versatile AIoT devices, not only for bird watching but also for other critical applications.

AIoT workshops can continue to be provided to university students, and also can be further developed as an experiential learning course for a common core course or a senior-level UG elective.

In collaboration with ITSC and relevant parties, student competitions can be organized to encourage them to invent various kinds of AIoT devices, ultimately to pave the way towards sustainable and smart campus, in a joint effort from all the members in the HKUST community.

This project has also been featured in an article in the magazine Vision by the Chinese General Chamber of Commerce, HK, which can be found here.