TEMPE, Ariz. – Artificial intelligence is being utilized in a Tempe school to prevent unwanted, potentially dangerous activity and upgrade its preventative safety measures.
“Crowd detection, gun detection, fire detection, all of that’s great. But learning how to apply it in the proper areas for the right reasons is how you mitigate risks,” says David Ly, chairman and CEO of Iveda.
The Mesa-based artificial intelligence company has been perfecting this software for years.
“It’s not about just detecting a gun. Artificial intelligence looks out for you for a lot of abnormalities. Even before a weapon shows up,” Ly said.
Iveda’s software was beta tested at Tempe Preparatory Academy after its headmaster decided the school needed to upgrade its preventative safety measures.
The AI is now a permanent fixture at the school.
“We’ve never had an incident, knock on wood, at Tempe Prep, but with the proliferation of school incidents around the country, and ever since Columbine, parents are all interested in making sure their students are safe,” said the headmaster of the academy Dr. Wayne Porter.
The AI is installed by Iveda into security cameras that already exist on campus and gives access and alerts to only a handful of people at the public charter school.
The technology can clearly identify a gun, a fire, or even abnormalities like a vehicle circling the parking lot.
“If, for example, there is a parent or person that is not supposed to have contact with a child, we can upload their picture and have it tell us if that person is found on campus,” Dr. Porter said.
Whenever AI is discussed, questions surrounding privacy typically follow.
“It’s not piercing into the school, it’s piercing at what’s coming at our school. I get a lot of ‘is this intruding on our children’s privacy?’ No. I want my schools, I have three kids, I wish that all their schools had this,” Ly said.
For the headmaster at Tempe Prep, this technology gives peace of mind.
“It’s that background security that you have in place, knowing that there is something watching your campus while we’re trying to do what we’re there to do, which is educate students,” Dr. Porter said.