couples, wearables,

I have always said that technology will bring the human race to its ultimate destiny one day. Peace, prosperity, and whatever else marks Utopia for us. A research that could soon play a huge role in maintaining peace in the world is currently underway and is showing great promise. Teams of researchers at the USC have linked arms and are currently participating in a study that aims to detect vital signs and help stem conflicts in couples before they even occur, using wearables. Hellelujah!

To conduct these tests, couple were brought into the lab and were equipped with wearables and smartphones. Once this was done, the couples were free to go about their normal lives. The aim was to recognize and detect fights between couples, for that fights actually needed to take place. Unsurprisingly enough, the teams of researchers decided against inducing these fights and simply let nature take its course.

The system works by capturing body temperature, heart activity and sweat. It then combines them with assessments of audio recordings. It then attempts to detect the content and intensity of speech as well. Finally, there is a machine learning system that has been developed by the team and that captures episodes of conflict. The system currently has an accuracy rate of up to 86-percent, which is pretty damn great — if you judge by how freaking unpredictable couples can be.

Speaking on the topic, lead author Adela C. Timmons said:

We have a longstanding collaboration between the family studies project in psychology and the SAIL project in engineering. We were working together a lot to try to process and analyze the large amount of data that we were collecting, and we had this idea of applying machine learning technology to our data set to see if we could detect if conflict was occurring between couples and levels greater than chance.

Once this system is perfected, it could recognize and signal conflicts up to 5 minute before they actually occur. More than enough time for one of the two halves to make themselves scarce, or attempt to defse the situation in some other way.

Check out an audio interview with the researchers, right below:




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