A Computer That Can Read Your Moods

Researchers from the US and the UK are working together on a new computer that they claim can read humans’ moods and states of mind by analyzing facial expressions and interpreting the underlying feelings. 

Scientists from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and the University of Cambridge say that already the system allows for a wide-range of emotions and mental states to be indentified.  And apparently all it takes is for you to aim a video camera at someone for the computer to work its magic.

The scientists speculate that this could eventually end up being a helpful advertising tool, allowing advertisers to serve up ads appropriate with our mood.  The imagine the mood reading capabilities to be extended to not just computers, but also mobile phones, cars, and more.

It also stands to be a helpful tool in online learning, providing feedback about whether the student actually understands the lesson he or she is being presented.

The scientists are working with a major car company, and say that the feature will be available in cars within 5 years. 

So if I’m feeling sad, are they going to start serving me up ads of Häagen-Dazs and Zoloft? It sounds way too creepy for me.  Why would I want a third-party knowing what kind of mood I am in?!

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