As much of our time as we spend watching screens, screens will soon be watching us. Businessweek writes:
Online training technology company Mindflash on Tuesday announced a new feature called FocusAssist for iPad that uses the tablet’s camera to track a user’s eye movements. When it senses that you’ve been looking away for more than a few seconds (because you were sending e-mails, or just fell asleep), it pauses the course, forcing you to pay attention—or at least look like you are—in order to complete it.
Sound kind of creepy, even Big Brother-y? Mindflash doesn’t think so. Donna Wells, the company’s CEO, writes in an e-mail: “Our focus is making sure trainees get all the information they need to do their jobs well.”
The feature was developed by a group of Stanford University Ph.D.s who also founded Sension, a “computer vision technology” company in Palo Alto that wants to use emotion- and facial-recognition technology to treat autism and Alzheimer’s disease.