Does This Headline Know You’re Reading It?

“Not yet, but it could…. Imagine how annoying pop up ads could be if they were triggered when you looked at them.”

German artificial intelligence researchers are combining web technology with eye-tracking hardware to create “text 2.0,” which “infers user intentions.” Reading certain words can trigger sound effects or animations, as well as the appearance of footnotes, translations, and definitions. If you’re skimming the text, unimportant words can fade out, and a bookmark automatically appears if you glance away. It can even pronounce the words that you’re reading.

There’s speculation similar technology may soon be adopted by Apple, since Apple has already purchased Tobii’s eye-tracking hardware. “Whether these are for internal research only or for a future product, Apple is characteristically not saying.”