Easy With Eve Virtual Teacher Understands Student Emotions

Easy with Eve is a new virtual teaching system developed by researcher Hossein Sarrafzadeh and his development group from the Institute of Information and Mathematical Sciences in Auckland, New Zealand.


(Easy with Eve the virtual teacher)

Eve's Final Fantasy-like facade hides the real engineering; Easy with Eve is designed to be a one-to-one system that constantly monitors a student better than a living teacher.

"Researchers wanted to create a virtual teacher that could pick up body language and facial expressions like a real teacher, to ensure they are holding the attention of students," Dr. Sarrafzadeh said. He added, "With rising demand for long-distance learning and online tutoring, a computer programe capable of detecting human emotions may become a critical teaching tool."

The Easy with Eve system uses a variety of methods to watch a student; a web cam monitors the child's facial expressions and body language. Dr. Sarrafzadeh's team observed children and their interactions with teachers; by analyzing thousands of images, they built Eve with the ability to detect when children are frustrated, angry or confused by the material being taught.

Heart rate and skin resistance are also gathered (via a special mouse); this data is added to Eve's understanding of each individual child and their requirements.

The animated avatar - Eve - can ask questions, give feedback, discuss problems and solutions. Eve can also show emotions to help keep the attention of each student. "When we interact with people we expect them to take note of our feelings and reactions. Soon we will be able to expect the same from a computer," says Dr Sarrafzadeh.

Science fiction writers have been dreaming about computer systems that could teach human beings for a long while. An early favorite of mine are the city fathers from James Blish's marvelous 1950's novels gathered in Cities in Flight.

For Eve, however, there is probably a closer analogue. In Twenty Evocations, Bruce Sterling writes about a composite expert system.

When Nikolai Leng was a child, his teacher was a cybernetic system with a holographic interface. The holo took the form of a young Shaper woman. It's "personality" was an interactive composite expert system manufactured by Shaper psychotechs. Nikolai loved it.
(Read more about the cybernetic teaching system)

It would be odd if Eve, the virtual teacher, made use of little teaching assistant robots to help out in the classroom; see Toddlers Embrace Our (Giggling) Robot Overlords for details.

Read more about Virtual Eve, the virtual teacher who understands. Also, take a look at a video of Easy with Eve.

Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 11/19/2007)

Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.

| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |

Would you like to contribute a story tip? It's easy:
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add it here.

Comment/Join discussion ( 1 )

Related News Stories - (" Computer ")

Eterni.me - To Skype With The Dead
'Nothing... left of Jeserac but a galaxy of electrons frozen in the heart of a crystal.'- Arthur C. Clarke, 1956.

Razer Project Valerie Laptop Unfurls
'A paper thin polycarbon screen unfurled silently...' - William Gibson, 1986.

Google Home Continues Implementation Of Pohl's Joymaker
'It is a transponder connecting you with the central computing facilities of the city in which you reside on a shared-time, self-programming basis.' - Frederik Pohl, 1966.

New Startup 'Improbable' To Model Our World
'A machine able literally to contain the Universe Itself...' - Stanislaw Lem, 1965.

 

Google
  Web TechNovelgy.com   

Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!) is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for the Invention Category that interests you, the Glossary, the Invention Timeline, or see what's New.

 

 

 

 

 

Current News

PassivDom 3D Printed House - What If You Could Live Anywhere?
'The houses are prefabricated units...'

Breakthrough In Manufacture Of Red Blood Cells
This blood's for you!

Caihong Solar-Powered Drone 'Atmospheric Satellite'
'... placed in the wings of a plane to generate power from the light falling on that surface.'

NASA Wants Low Earth Orbit Wifi
'This was the center of Interplanetary Communications.'

Is Genetic Testing At Businesses A Bad Idea?
It's not a topic that fares well in science fiction movies-

Wearable Smart Jacket
He pressed the button in his sleeve communicator and snapped: 'Action stations!'

Store One Bit On One Atom
'...each individual molecule has a meaning.'

Fluorescent Bacteria Fashion
'The racks of gowns itched and quivered, their colors running into blurred pools.'

Keith Laumer's Bolo Autonomous Tanks Right On Schedule
'I cannot lie idle under attack.'

When Computers Develop Their Own Language, Will They Talk To Us?
'The curious absent look of a robot talking on the TBR circuits - the Talk Between Robots radio...'

LipNet Reads Lips - Until Disconnected, That Is
'We'd have to cut his higher brain functions... I'm not sure what [HAL} would think about that.'

Eterni.me - To Skype With The Dead
'Nothing... left of Jeserac but a galaxy of electrons frozen in the heart of a crystal.'

Wearable MRI Is Former Occulus/Facebook Exec's New Project
'Your cephalochromoscope... that you always turn on and play when you get home...'

Ford Stratasys Infinte Build 3D Printer
'He proudly indicated his Buick... Almost as good as the original it was printed from...'

The Space Suit As Personal Spaceship
'Darn clever, these suits...'

Dune Fans! Your God Emperor Is Ready
'If one held a sandtrout in the hand, smoothing it over your skin, it formed a living glove.'

More SF in the News Stories

More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories

Home | Glossary | Invention Timeline | Category | New | Contact Us | FAQ | Advertise |
Technovelgy.com - where science meets fiction™

Copyright© Technovelgy LLC; all rights reserved.