Award-Winning Glasses Help with Building and Baking

Project from CITEC researchers wins prize in “Landmarks in the Land of Ideas” competition

Today, 4 June 2018, researchers at the Cluster of Excellence Cognitive Interaction Technology (CITEC) at Bielefeld University and their cooperation partners were awarded a prize for their intelligent glasses (Adamaas system) in Berlin. An independent jury selected the Bielefeld submission from among 100 submissions from approximately 1,500 applications submitted to the nationwide innovation competition “Ausgezeichnete Orte im Land der Ideen” (“Landmarks in the Land of Ideas”). On the topic of “Connecting Worlds – Strengthening Unity,” the project puts forth an answer to the question of how intelligent technology can provide assistance to elderly people as well as individuals with cognitive disabilities. This is already the second success for researchers from the Cluster of Excellence in this competition.

Adamaas glasses provide assistance while baking by virtually displaying the different steps of the process. Instead of tediously searching for the right part while flipping through the pages of an instruction manual, the intelligent glasses of the Adamaas system directly display the step that comes next in the user’s field of vision. This works for everything from operating a coffee machine to building a birdhouse, along with a set of other practical tasks. “With the help of the Adamaas glasses, people of the most diverse of backgrounds are empowered to participate in activities they’re not familiar with,” says Professor Dr. Thomas Schack of the Cluster of Excellence CITEC at Bielefeld University.

To do this, the glasses record and take account of the users’ abilities and the conditions needed for the activity. Based on this, the glasses give feedback for individualized learning processes. In combination with computer vision and augmented reality, the system can independently recognize objects and steps of an activity to provide appropriate assistance directly in the glasses’ display. The Bundesministerium für Bildung und Forschung (Federal Ministry for Education and Research) is funding this project through the end of April with 1.2 million Euro.

The initiative “Germany – Land of Ideas” and the Deutsche Bank honored this project as one of 100 projects that strengthen the unity of society. Dieter Kempf, President of the Bundesverbands der Deutschen Industrie (BDi, Federation of German Industries), acknowledges how much society benefits from those who lead by example: “A society needs unity and opportunities for the participation of its citizens. Otherwise, it is not a place worthy of its citizens. The ‘Landmarks’ in this year’s competition are beacons of camaraderie. With their innovations, the prize winners bring different worlds together: the young with the elderly, the strong with the weak, the city with the countryside, social projects with high-tech. They prove that promoting and sharing courageous ideas brings us all added value. Their 100 innovations are making society better.”

Three years ago, the Cluster of Excellence at Bielefeld University also received an award in this competition for its thinking apartment called KogniHome, an apartment with intelligent technology that provides assistance to people in their daily activities.

“Germany – Land of Ideas” is the joint initiative of the Federal government of Germany and German industry as represented by the BDI. Deutsche Bank has been a partner since 2006, providing national funding for the “Landmarks in the Land of Ideas” competition. The goal of this initiative is to elevate the visibility of innovations in Germany both at home and abroad, and to strengthen the performance capacity and future viability of the location.

More information is available online at:

Prof. Dr. Thomas Schack, Bielefeld University
Cluster of Excellence Cognitive Interaction Technology (CITEC)
Telephone: +49 521 106-6991