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'Seabreeze' Apple And UCLA Project To Beat Depression
Seabreeze is a partnership between Apple and UCLA to examine anxiety and depression by tracking iPhone sensor data.
Participants in the research "will track data from the iPhone's video camera, keyboard and audio sensors, and data from the watch related to movement, vital signs and sleep, according to the documents and people familiar with the study."
"The data that may be used includes analysis of participants' facial expressions, how they speak, the pace and frequency of their walks, sleep patterns, and heart and respiration rates. They may also measure the speed of their typing, frequency of their typos and content of what they type, among other data points, according to the people familiar with the research and the documents," the outlet noted.
Philip K. Dick, no stranger to psychotherapy and psychological testing, described a robot psyche tester in Colony, a 1953 short story:
The robot psyche tester whirred, integrating and gestalting. At last its color code lights changed from red to green.
"Well?" Hall demanded.
"Severe disturbance. Instability ratio up above ten."
"That's over danger?"
"Yes. Eight is danger. Ten is unusual, especially for a person with your index. You usually show about a four... If you could give me more data-"
Hall set his jaw. "I can't tell you any more."
"It's illegal to hold back information during a psyche test," the machine said peevishly. "If you do that you deliberately distort my findings."
Of course, it's only a matter of time and Apple design magic before your iPhone can not only detect depression, but alleviate it as well. Cue the Rex Regenerator from Bad Medicine, a 1956 short story by Robert Sheckley.
"...Now then, here is just what you need, sir." [The sales clerk] put his hand affectionately on a squat black machine with chrome trim.
"That, sir, is the Rex Regenerator, built by General Motors. Isn't it handsome? It can go with any decor and opens up into a well-stocked bar. Your friends, family, loved ones need never know--"
"Will it cure a homicidal urge?" Caswell asked. "A strong one?"
"Absolutely. Don't confuse this with the little ten amp neurosis models. This is a hefty, heavy-duty, twenty-five amp machine for a really deep-rooted major condition."
"That's what I've got," said Caswell, with pardonable pride.
"This baby'll jolt it out of you. Big, heavy-duty thrust bearings! Oversize heat absorbers! Completely insulated! Sensitivity range of over--"
"I'll take it," Caswell said. "Right now. I'll pay cash."
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