From IC Realtech Wiki
Jump to: navigation, search
ella - Intelligent Video Search Engine

Ella, a new cloud-based deep-learning search engine that augments surveillance systems with natural language search capabilities across recorded video footage. Ella uses both algorithmic and deep learning tools to give any surveillance or security camera the ability to recognize objects, colors, people, vehicles, animals and more. Ella was designed with the technology backbone of Camio, a startup founded by ex-Googlers who realized there could be a way to apply search to streaming video feeds. Ella makes every nanosecond of video searchable instantly, letting users type in queries like “white truck” to find every relevant clip instead of searching through hours of footage. Ella quite simply creates a Google for video.


“The idea was born from a simple question: if we can search the entire internet in under a second, why can’t we do the same with video feeds,” said Carter Maslan, CEO of Camio. “IC Realtime is the perfect partner to bring this advanced video search capability to the global surveillance and security market because of their knowledge and experience with the needs of users in this space. Ella is the result of our partnership in fine-tuning the service for security applications.”


ella is an open platform for smart video monitoring. It scales from a single pet cam at home to 1000s of video streams in data centers. It works with all cameras, DVRs, NVRs, and VMSs that support standard H.264 RTSP video streams.

Using the most advanced machine learning algorithms, ella is able to identify the most important events that were recorded. ella also learns what you care about from the way you use it, so it gets smarter over time, continuously improving your daily summaries and alerts.

IC Realtech connects cameras & NVRs to state-of-the-art Machine Learning (ML/AI). ML is an umbrella term that includes a variety of techniques that have driven radical advances in Artificial Intelligence (AI). Some kinds of ML - like Deep Learning with Convolutional Neural Networks (CNNs) - get the most attention because their results are amazing and they require such massive computing power that the tech industry sees a sea-change opportunity in enabling computers to understand what’s happening in the real world.

The big innovation here is in applying ML to all video streams at a scale and price that has never been possible before. IC Realtech's multi-stage processing funnel eliminates spurious motion, adapts to the scene, ranks the importance of events, learns quickly from very few user interactions, and applies labels in real-time at low cost. The processing pipeline is not only extensible with hooks but also employs a variety of ML techniques including Recurrent Neural Networks (RNNs), Long Short-Term Memory Recurrent Neural Networks (LSTMs), and the most expensive CNNs. This enables people to exploit the latest advances from Google, Microsoft, Amazon, NVIDIA, etc… that would otherwise be extremely expensive. People get a real-time Search Engine for their own private video streams. It's a browse and search experience that is unprecedented in both speed and cost.

How it Works

  1. Install one of our ICR Box products on the camera network. The Box will allow ella to break down your surveillance video into metadata and send it along to the secure server.
  2. The metadata is analyzed by state of the art Deep Learning, which then transforms it into searchable pieces of information.
  3. Use ella as your video surveillance search engine - the same way you search the internet today, with Natural Language (ex. If you try to search "man in a white shirt", you will be shown all the video segments gathered from all the cameras connected to ella that show a man in the white).

Adding Cameras to Record on Ella

ella - adding cameras to ella

Use the plus and minus buttons to increase or decrease the number of cameras on your Ella plans on your https://cloud.icrealtech.com/account/

After you adjust the number of cameras, the Buy button shows the new total amount of your monthly subscription even though you'll be credited for any amount remaining on your old subscription. So in effect, your new subscription replaces your old subscription and your invoice will accurately reflect the credit from the cancellation of your old subscription.

Searching Video in Ella

ella - searching cameras in ella
ella - searching cameras in ella

Open your video history and enter a query. You can either type your query or click the buttons on the Search panel.

For example, to see people approaching your walkway from your camera named outdoor, you type (as in this video) the query:

''people approaching walkway''

You can also use natural language for simple dates and times like:

  • Times
    • 9:30am
    • 3pm yesterday
    • 4pm Monday
    • 12/24 11pm
    • 2am PST 3 days ago
  • Colors
    • red
    • white
    • black
    • brown
    • blue

You can also search for cars and people along with direction of movement like approaching or departing.

It doesn't matter whether you type your search or click the Search panel buttons. For example, rather than type "brown" you can click the color instead:

You can pin your favorite searches to the top of your Search History by clicking on the thumbtack icon to the left of a recent search:

Even without typing a specific search, Ella shows you only the important Events by default ("Top" Events is the default search). To see everything recorded, regardless of whether it was deemed interesting to you, include "all" in your search or click the "All" button at the top of your screen, to the right of the search bar.

Downloading Video from Ella

ella - Intelligent Video Search Engine

Your content is stored securely in the cloud, but if you'd like to download particular Events onto your computer's local storage, follow these steps in your desktop browser at https://cloud.icrealtech.com/app

  1. Select the Events you'd like to download by clicking the checkbox in the upper right corner of each Event.
  2. Click Download in the More... menu.
  3. Open the zip file that was downloaded in your browser.

You can also download to your smartphone using the Smart Ella app.

Sharing Ella Video

Sharing Ella Video
Sharing Ella Video
Sharing Ella Video

By default, your content at Smartella.com is accessible only to you. Unless you explicitly authorize another person to view your content, no one else can see it - not even IC Realtech employees. So when you want to share some portion of your content with another person, you have three options:

Share selected Events as a link that includes only a small portion of your content, no sign-in required. You can select individual Events or a range of Events.

Individual Events: click the checkbox in the upper-right corner of each Event, or Range of Events: hold the shift key down while clicking the first and last Event in a range.

Share a Query Link that enables users to search within the constraints of your shared query, no sign-in required.

Add a Guest to allow someone to access all your content, sign-in required.

Share selected Events from your web browser

For example, say you want to send a quick email to all neighbors warning of these coyotes passing through your back yard! You want to make it easy for anyone with the link to see only the two events you want to share.

Just select the checkbox in the upper right of each event you want to share, as in this example that selects 3 events:

Then click the Share button and choose the green Link:

The sharing options are:

  1. Facebook, Google+, Twitter: posts to those social media sites.
  2. Donate to Science (the lab beaker icon on the far right): shares the selected Events with ella & Camio engineers to analyze problems.
  3. Link: creates a link to copy and paste into email or other sites.

After you click the green Link button, copy the link shown at the bottom:

Share selected Events from your mobile app

Select the events you wish to share by taping the checkboxes visible in the top right corner of each event. Once you've checked one or more events, the multi-select menu will appear in the top bar. Tap the share icon to share all of the currently selected events.

Add a Guest

For family members and friends to sign in to see your video, add them as Guests on your account. Enter their email addresses in the Guests[1] section of the Settings page.

Note: Your added Guests will be able to view your video only after they have verified their email address. If your Guest signed-in with Google or Facebook, then their email address has already been verified; but if they signed-in via the Email method, then they must verify that they own the email address. If they didn't keep the Smart Ella welcome email with the email verification link, then they can resend the email verification.

Creating Zones on Ella

Creating Zones on Ella
Type of Zones on Ella
Completed Zones on Ella
  1. Open your Web Browser to view your cameras at: https://smartella.com
  2. Click on the desired camera then click the Edit Zones menu item in the overflow menu (highlighted in orange oval below):
  3. Press and hold the mouse as you draw to outline the area that is of special interest. When you release the mouse, you're prompted for the Name and Type of the zone. There are three types of zones:
    1. Normal: motion in the region is especially interesting.
    2. Negative: ignore all motion that is completely contained within the region. Negatives zone names are prefixed with a minus sign ('-').
    3. Unhabituated: even frequently reoccurring motion like rippling water or blowing leaves should never be filtered as background scene "noise". Unhabituated zones names are prefixed with a question mark ('?).
  4. Name the zone and press Save.

TIP: Enter zone names that describe the region of the scene in the language you'd like to use for search. In this example, we want to search for people and bikes on the "sidewalk" and exclude all the passing cards solely in the negative "-street" zone:

Additional Notes:

To delete a zone, click the trashcan next to the name of the zone you'd like to delete.

Currently, Zones can only be setup in the browser version of Smart Ella.

With Smart Ella, you can ignore motion in particular areas by using negative zones.

Manual Tagging on Smart Ella

Manual Tagging on Smart Ella
  1. Select one or more Events you'd like to label by clicking the checkbox in the upper right corner of each Event (or shift-click to select a range of Events).
  2. Press the Label icon to open the pane showing all the existing labels.
  3. Click the text of the label to confirm it as correct (which turns it black).
  4. Click the 'x' of the label to remove it as incorrect.
  5. Type a new label and press Enter to add a label.
  6. Press Save once you've completed your desired changes.

Black Labels: These labels are confirmed as correct for all the selected Events and indexed for search.

White Labels: These labels are found on 1 or more selected Events and aren't yet confirmed as correct.

When you press Save, the effect on your indexed Events is immediate in terms of subsequent search results of the modified Events. However, the new Machine Learning models are updated gradually as training data is sufficient to influence future labeling of your Events, so you may not see a change in future labeling right away.

Update Payment Information on Ella

Payment Information on Ella
Update Payment Information

First Navigate to:


At the bottom of your available payment plans choose Update Payment information.

A popup will appear and you will need to enter the credit card information and click Pay.

Reset Ella Password

Reset Ella Password

If you chose Google or Facebook as your sign-in method, then you must reset your password using those services. IC Realtech has no access to those passwords.

If you chose Email as your sign-in method, which creates an Ella account based on your email address, then you can reset your password with this link:


Cancel Ella Subscription

Cancel Ella Subscription

To cancel your subscription for your already recording cameras, go to https://cloud.icrealtech.com/account/

On this page, look at the bottom of your recording plan for your cameras. You will see the cancel subscription option. If selected, the plan will continue until you are out of days.

EX: If you have a 30 day plan and cancel it at 20 days, you still have 10 days of recording.

Delete Ella Account

Delete Ella Account

Go to https://cloud.icrealtech.com/delete-account/ and press the Delete Account button.

For security reasons, you cannot ever restore your account using the same email address associated with your deleted account, so delete your account only if you're certain that you'll never use Smart Ella; otherwise, simply allow IC Realtech to purge all the content in your account instead.

Reset Ella box

Items Needed:

  • Ella Box
  • USB Flash Drive
  • Familiarity with copying files to a USB Flash Drive

What does a reset do?

A factory reset will cause the Ella Box to:

  • Revert to the original version of the software that came with Box from the factory.
  • Reset all networking settings to their defaults. (reverts to DHCP if you had assigned a static IP)
  • Clear the main storage disk of all videos and event metadata.
  • Resetting your device to factory settings will not delete the device configuration, but you will have to reregister the device from the cloud.icrealtech.com/box/register page. Once the device is reregistered it will contain the same camera configuration that it did before the factory reset was performed.

How do I reset my Ella Box?

  1. Insert your USB flash drive into a computer.
  2. Create a blank text file called "reset".
  3. Copy the file called "reset" into the root folder of the flash drive.
  4. Turn off your Ella Box.
  5. Insert the flash drive into one of the USB ports of your Ella Box.
  6. Turn on your Ella Box.
  7. Wait 2 minutes for the reset to complete.
  8. Power off, then remove the USB flash drive and re-power your Ella Box.
  9. The device will now have reverted to factory settings.

Why would I want to reset to factory settings?

This is an advanced feature that most users will never have to use. The purpose of the factory-reset is to recover a Box that is unable to communicate with Smart Ella servers. This could happen if:

  • Box loses power during a firmware upgrade.
  • You change network settings to invalid values that take the Box offline.

Contact Information