ITK Spring Workshop Trilogy (1) @ McGill University

The three of us, Matt McCormick, Luis Ibanez and Xiaoxiao Liu, visited the Montreal Neurology Institue (MNI) of  McGill University in Montreal on May 21st and successfully held the ITK workshop and hackathon event with our local host Dr. Louis Collins and his lab from MNI.

We had an extraordinary turnout of 70 people attending the workshop (and about 30 people were on the waiting list due to the limited seating). They were mostly graduate students, researchers and faculty members from MNI,  the biomedical engineering department of McGill University, and the University of Montreal. A number of participants also came from local companies that provide services related to medical imaging. A couple of attendees even traveled from Toronto for this event.

Provided with VirtualBox virtual machines with ITK and tutorial material pre-installed, workshop participants got hands-on experience with image analysis examples using SimpleITK with IPython notebooks, and step-by-step basic image filtering and ITKv4 image registration C++ examples.  Dr. Vladimir S. Fonov  from MNI lab also presented an example of IO with the MINC2 file format inside ITK.  Support for the MINC2 file format was added in ITK 4.4.0 after a previous hackathon in Montreal and a epic number of patch revisions in Gerrit.

Vlad presents MINC IO with ITK. Vladimir S. Fonov from MNI is presenting  an example of MINC IO in ITK.

On the following day, we had a hackathon with several ITK community members from MNI. Matt worked on several MINC related patches with Vladimir. Xiaoxiao coached a new ITK community member, Elodie Boudes, to get on speed to program her first ITK image registration program for her brain image datasets. Luis helped a postdoc, Dr. Rina Zelmann, to debug an ITK filtering pipeline. We were also given a tour in Dr. Collin’s lab and were amazed by their real-time camera-tracking system (Interactive Brain Imaging System) that are used to register pre-operative image to ultrasound and 2D camera images for brain surgery in vivo. The implementation were based on ITK, VTK, MINC, and QT.

Hackathon activities the next day. 

  Dr. Simon Drouin presents his tool that assists neurosurgical interventions.

         Mission completed — Kitware team is ready to reset for the next workshop

This event was supported by the National Institutes of Health-National Library of Medicine (NIH-NLM), Kitware Inc., and the MNI of McGill University. We especially thank our excellent host Dr. Collins from MNI for his efforts in helping organizing this great event.

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