Pythian data scientist Ann-Julie Rhéaume wins prize in U.S. National Library of Medicine Challenge

Posted in: Business Insights

OTTAWA, ON August 11, 2016—Pythian, a 400-person global IT services company that helps companies adopt disruptive technologies to better compete, is pleased to announce that Pythian Data Scientist, Ann-Julie Rhéaume and her team member Greg Sadetsky have been awarded second place in the the U.S. National Library of Medicine’s Pill Image Recognition Challenge.


The Pill Image Recognition Challenge launched in January 2016, and called for submissions from teams to contribute to the creation of a software system that could match photos taken by a smartphone to the NLM RxIMAGE database of high-resolution prescription pill images. This would give consumers a simple way to recognize mystery pills, help prevent unnecessary medication errors, and reduce waste by identifying pills that might otherwise be discarded. The winning teams were announced on August 1, 2016.


For the contest, Rhéaume built a model using Tensorflow, Google’s newly released neural network framework. “The two keys components of our solution are the image preprocessing (which Greg did using OpenCV), and the machine learning component which I created,” said Rhéaume. “I built a convolutional neural network using Google Tensorflow and trained it to recognize images representing similar pills. We used AWS cloud servers to speed up training and find optimal hyperparameters.”


“Congratulations to Ann-Julie on behalf of the Pythian community,” said Aaron Lee, Pythian’s Chief Digital Officer. “We are grateful for and proud of the impactful outcomes talented colleagues like Ann-Julie enable for our customers and communities.”


About Pythian

Founded in 1997, Pythian is a 400-person global IT services company that helps businesses compete by adopting disruptive technologies such as databases, big data, cloud, advanced analytics, infrastructure management, and DevOps to advance innovation and increase agility. Specializing in designing, implementing, and managing systems that directly contribute to revenue growth and business success, Pythian’s highly skilled technical teams work as an integrated extension of our clients’ organizations to deliver continuous transformation and uninterrupted operational excellence.


Media Contact: Lynda Partner, [email protected], 613-794-8474


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