Kinect cameras being used to help detect autism in children

Very cool what gaming software and hardware can do. Kinect and Wii motion technologies are powerful and will be doing much more in the near future.

From the article:

“Detecting autism in children can be a difficult, expensive, and time-consuming process that requires the trained eye of a medical professional. But researchers Guillermo Sapiro and Nikolaos Papanikolopoulos believe that the Microsoft Kinect gaming sensor could assist in that task.

As part of an experiment at the University of Minnesota’s Institute of Child Development, Sapiro and Papanikolopoulos set up a series of five Microsoft Kinect sensors in the playroom of a school. There, the motion-detecting cameras recorded the movements of the children, aged 3 to 5, and sent the collected data to a series of PCs. The computers then calculated what children were most at risk for autism based on their hand movements and activity levels. Children whose activity levels differed greatly from their peers were flagged for further study by medical professionals.

Researchers admit the cameras are no substitute for the opinion of a real doctor, but say they could still help determine which children require closer examination for signs of autism. “The same way a good teacher flags a problem child, the system will do automatic flagging and say, ‘Hey, this kid needs to see an expert,'” says Shapiro.”

More of the article here

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