One of the biggest impacts that the advancement of digital has had on the world is improving human lives. Artificial Reality (AR) has been prominent in the digital space for years, but recently the research on this technology has been more concentrated on how it can enhance people’s lives.
A particular area of research has been focused on how AR could be used to help children with autism. Many autistic children find it difficult to read emotions on people’s faces, which is the main driver behind the creation of the Autism Glass Project.
Google Glass, launched just under five years ago, is a wearable android that displays information on the lens of the glasses. To the normal eye, the device looks like a bulky pair of glasses, but this technology has been further developed to generate ‘Autism Glass’ Therapy which is currently being tested by Stanford Medicine alongside Google.
The system uses AR to automate facial expression recognition through the outward facing camera on the glasses. This then provides social cues to the individual, through words or emoji’s. The trial of this new technology has grown increasingly with the aim to be released on the market in the near future.
However, the Autism Glass Project is not the only digital element that could change the lives of children with autism. The spherical robot Leka is designed for autistic children and works by using sounds, light and colours to interact with its user. The robot also has a likeable face that changes expression to help children with Autism Spectrum Disorder. Leka responds to its user’s participation in games, customised to improve cognitive and motor skills, all controlled via Bluetooth and programmed through an app.
Brands are also starting to get into the mind set of finding ways to improve the quality of their customers’ lives. A great example of this is Listerine and its Power of a Smile campaign released late last year.
This thought provoking campaign is based upon the creation of an app that allows blind people to ‘feel a smile.’ Listerine have combined AR with facial recognition technology detecting smiles and then creating a noise or vibration to notify the user that has impaired sight. To gain more information about this campaign, below is the moving video that was released alongside the app.
This is just a few examples of how the digital revolution is aiding people’s quality of life and having positive impacts which are rippling through many industries.
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