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MVTec Upgrades MERLIC Software

By Joel Davies -

MVTec Software GmbH has revealed that it will launch the latest version (5.1) of its MERLIC machine vision software on April 7, 2022.

MERLIC enables complete machine vision applications to be developed and operated without having to write a single line of code. Six months after the release of MERLIC 5, an enhanced feature set is now available that provides better usability. In addition to the anomaly detection and classification features that were already included in MERLIC 5, Deep OCR and a range of deep learning AI technology has been added. MVTec has also optimized hardware compatibility in MERLIC 5.1, accelerating deep learning applications.

“MERLIC 5.1 is inspired by our belief that even users without any in-depth programming knowledge should be able to benefit from machine vision”, explains Christoph Wagner, Technical Product Manager MERLIC at MVTec. “MERLIC 5 was already a tremendous success and raised the software to a whole new level. With version 5.1, we’re continuing along the same path – for example, by relying even more on innovative deep learning technologies and integrating new functions so that more users can take advantage of our easy-to-use machine vision software”.

MERLIC 5.1 includes a new tool for optical character recognition that is based on HALCON’s Deep OCR technology. This holistic deep-learning-based approach can localize characters regardless of their orientation, font type, polarity, and it requires less parameter tuning. Recognition performance is further increased by the automatic grouping of characters which allows the identification of whole words and thus reduces the chance of misinterpretation of similar-looking characters. This new tool does not require the Deep Learning Add-On and is therefore already included in the entry-level package MERLIC 5.1 S.

MERLIC 5.1 also includes Artificial Intelligence Acceleration Interface (AI²) plug-ins for the NVIDIA® TensorRT™ SDK and the Intel® Distribution of OpenVINO™ toolkit. This enables users to benefit from compatible AI accelerator hardware so MERLIC tools using deep learning functionality can achieve faster inference times when paired with compatible hardware like NVIDIA GPUs or Intel processors including GPUs, CPUs and VPUs like the Intel® Movidius™ Neural Compute Stick. The support for AI² also means MERLIC will benefit from any future plug-ins that integrate new accelerator hardware.

The final feature of the upgrade is within the Image Source Manager (ISM), which allows users to select and set the correct camera parameters in MERLIC 5.1. In MERLIC 5.1, MVTec notes that the required parameters can be found “much faster and with greater ease” when setting a camera up. The search for parameters can now be carried out via the ISM GUI, similar to the search function in the Tool Library. In addition, it is possible to filter for persistent parameters that are stored in the camera, even if the camera is switched off. Configurations and image sources can now be renamed in MERLIC RTE Setup, whilst the connection status of cameras that support this feature is now displayed.

You can find more information about MVTec and MERLIC 5.1 on its website.

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