Almost everyone has had that awkward experience of leaning in for a first kiss with someone. All you can do is hope that the other person was really leaning in for a kiss, and not just leaning in for a high five or something. As anyone who has ever played the dating game can attest, body language can be extremely difficult to interpret. There are thousands of little things we do with our bodies that imply so much about what we’re thinking and feeling. Now researchers at MIT are working on computer systems that can analyze and interpret body language to hopefully make that first kiss a little less awkward.
Learning through television
Our parents always yelled at us for sitting in front of the television all day because it stunted our brains. But television is how researchers at MIT are teaching their neural networks to understand body language. So far, it’s watched over 600 hours of shows like “Desperate Housewives” and “The Office” (talk about a Netflix binge).
Next, researchers gave their algorithm new videos to watch and would pass the show one second before a hug, kiss, high-five, or handshake and ask it to predict which human behavior was about to take place. Incredibly, their deep learning program predicted the correct action 43% of the time. It wasn’t as good as humans (who were correct 71% of the time) but it’s a promising step in the right direction.
Currently, MIT’s algorithm isn’t accurate enough for real world application, but we’re all waiting anxiously for the day when a device can be inconspicuously attached to us and whisper in our ear when our romantic interest is ready for that first kiss.
Source: The Motley Fool