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VicarVision – A Healthy Heart with Automated Assistance

News Item – 03 September 2019

VicarVision develops state of the art solutions and products for computer vision. The technologies we develop are aimed to create vicarious perception. We want our machines to perceive and name the objects and events presented to them through cameras, in the same way that we would; so they can keep an eye on things for us. VicarVision has a special interest in perceiving people’s behavior. FaceReader™ is the premier product for automatically evaluating emotional expressions in the human face. It is used in behavioral research institutes all over the world in studies assessing the usability and user experience of software systems, food preference and video conferencing interactions, to name a few.

As part of the Innolabs acceleration process VicarVision developed a new mobile application that can be used to measure emotions and heart rate unobtrusively. Mood disorders are highly prevalent in elderly; therefore, to facilitate healthy ageing it would be beneficial to have an extra entity keeping an eye out on someone’s heart. The camera of a tablet or mobile phone can be used to obtain useful health related metrics from the face. Facial expressions and expressiveness can reveal someone’s mood and an innovative technology called remote PPG can estimate heart rate from skin color.

Facial features can also be used to train computer algorithms to recognize unhealthy patterns. In collaboration with PLUX, a Portuguese company specialized in advanced biosignals monitoring platforms, we collected data from participants while they were using a mobile device. This data can be used to validate the heart rate measurements with wearable sensors and further develop our machine learning algorithms.

The project was supported by INNOLABS and participated in the 2nd accelaration programme for which HealthClusterNet provided technical assisstance and professional support.

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