Control of a camera by the glance

Contact: Fabien Spindler

Creation Date : April 1997

Description of the demonstration

This demonstration, carried out in real time on the cylindrical robotic vision cell, presents the results of the control of a camera using human eye movements. Indeed, the camera mounted on the end-effector of our robot is controlled using the direction of the glance of an operator looking at a monitor that displays the images acquired by this camera. To perform this task, we use an eye-tracker. After a preliminary step of calibration, the eye-tracker allows to extract the coordinates in the image of the region of interest observed by the operator. The vision task consists in moving, by visual servoing, this region of interest at the center of the image by controlling the orientation of the camera. In addition, the operator can also operate the zoom of the camera to obtain more details on the observed scene.

A video film titled "control of a camera by the glance" was produced by inria

Experimental system

The eye-tracker The cylindrical robot
The eye-tracker The cylindrical robot

The visual servoing controller
The visual servoing controller


The aimed domain is the remote monitoring of sensitive sites (carparks, banks) or the intervention in contaminated nuclear sites. The use of cameras whose movements can be controlled brings a greater flexibility compared to the use of many fixed cameras. Moreover, a fine exploration of the selected region of interest can be carried out.

Scientific context

This study lies within the scope of the research carried out in visual servoing. Furthermore we study, in collaboration with the Temics project at Irisa, the issue of selective image compression.


This work is done within the framework of the 11th contract between French State and the Brittany council, and more precisely within the VIDAC project with the CEMAGREF (Rennes) and the Temics project at Irisa.


  1. F Spindler, F Chaumette. Gaze control using human eye movements - International IEEE Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA), Albuquerque, New Mexico, April 1997

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