Scientist turns his face into a remote control

June 26th, 2008 - 3:52 pm ICT by IANS  

Washington, June 26 (IANS) The hunt for the remote is over! Soon your face will replace it. Yes, a budding scientist has evolved a way to speed up or slow video playback by using his face as a remote.

The demonstration was part of a larger project to use automated facial expression recognition to make robots more effective teachers.

In a pilot study, University of California’s Jacob Whitehill, who conceptualised the project, demonstrated how facial expressions of people watching recorded video lectures could be used to predict his or her preferred viewing speed; or how difficult a person perceives the lecture at each moment.

“If I am a student dealing with a robot teacher and I am completely puzzled and yet the robot keeps presenting new material, that’s not going to be very useful to me,” said Whitehill.

“If, instead, the robot stops and says, ‘Oh, maybe you’re confused,’ and I say, ‘Yes, thank you for stopping’ that’s really good,” said Whitehill.

The findings of the pilot study are slated for presentation in two peer-reviewed academic conferences, reported Eurekalert.

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