Watch TV With Google

Google is working on developing a product that would deliver personalized internet content based on what you are watching on TV.  Their proposal was made last week in Athens at the Euro ITV (Interactive Television) Conference.

The project is currently being worked on by two Google researchers, Michele Covell and Shumeet Baluja. The researchers showed how they could sample the ambient sound emitted from a TV and automatically determine what is being watched from a small signature of sound.  They say that it is completely private, and requires very little effort.

The system would also be able to keep up with users as they surf through channels, updating content as the television program changes.  For example, if you’re watching a live political discussion, it would bring you to a forum where you could discuss it.  Or a chat room for the sporting even you’re watching. If you’re watching a movie, it could show you the various locations presented in the movie, clips about the actors, and so on.

It sounds like an interesting project, and is only in the very earliest stages of development.  It will likely be awhile before any kind of product is available for consumer use. 

I just hope that they have a feature that would allow you to shut off automatic surfing cuz sometimes I like to actively surf the web on my laptop while watching tv.

Interestingly, Microsoft recently applied for a patent for a similiar technology although they too are in the very early stages of development.  If you’re interested in reading the entire paper, which by the way won the “Best Paper” award at the conference, you can check it out here.

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