MIT scientists have combined a biosensor wristband, a special smartphone, and a mirror attached to a computer to create a system that lets its user review the emotional highs and lows of their day or someone else's.
Currently being tested at MIT’s Media Lab is a system called Inside-Out that, true to its name, allows a person to visualize the emotional ups and down of a typical day. There are three main parts to the system: a biosensor embedded into a wristband, a smartphone that records its user’s surroundings and collects the biosensor data, and a one-way mirror in front of a computer with a Kinect sensor. On this mirror, the user can review their day’s events as received by the biosensor and smartphone, using gestures to indicate what they want to see. Inside-Out was presented earlier this year at the IEEE Pervasive Computing and Communication conference.
What’s the Big Idea?
There are many potential benefits to a system that display its user’s emotions in a tangible way, but one particular group — children and adults with autism, and their families — might find it especially valuable. “Because people with autism often struggle to articulate their emotions, Inside-Out could help parents and caregivers keep track of what events elicited a strong emotional response and act accordingly.”
Combining years of neurological research and mindfulness techniques, Dr. Heather Berlin helps us better understand how the body’s most complex organ can easily be misled into negative thinking - and how we can stop that from happening.