Computerized Lip-Reading Crime Fighters

A Computerized lip-reading system is now under development at the University of East Anglia. The three year project will collect data for lip-reading; engineers will then design hardware and software capable of converting videos of lip-motions directly into text.

Surrey University has already built accurate face and lip tracking devices at their Centre for Vision, Speech & Signal Processing. The computer lip-reading project will continue this work. The University of East Anglia has received a substantial $765,000 grant to complete the project.

Britain's Home Office Scientific Development Branch is also interested. It is hoped that videos of potential criminals could be analyzed and their comments recorded, even in circumstances where audio recording is impossible.

Dr. Richard Harvey, senior lecturer at UEA's School of Computing Sciences, is leading the project:

"To be effective the systems must accurately track the head over a variety of poses, extract numbers, or features, that describe the lips and then learn what features correspond to what text.

"To tackle the problem we will need to use information collected from audio speech. So this project will also investigate how to use the extensive information known about audio speech to recognise visual speech.

"The work will be highly experimental. We hope to have produced a system that will demonstrate the ability to lip-read in more general situations than we have done so far."
(From Crime Fighting Potential For Computerized Lip-reading)

Science fiction fans have seen this future before. In the film 2001:A Space Odyssey, the HAL 9000 computer was able to read lips.


(HAL 9000 [background] eavesdrops on astronauts Poole and Bowman)

In the film, HAL's increasingly erratic behavior becomes a matter of concern for the astronauts. Since HAL can effectively monitor every part of the ship, the astronauts retire to a small pod to discuss the matter. Unfortunately, it turns out that somebody did research on computer lip-reading, and so HAL was on to them, with very unfortunate results for Poole.

It's interesting to note that scientists and engineers have been thinking for more than a generation about what it might take to do computerized lip-reading. A patent was issued to IBM in 1965 for a device consisting of an array of photocells that captured the reflected light emitted from the oral cavity region. This information, along with facial articulatory movements, would be essential in trying to enable Optical Automatic Speech Recognition.

Thanks to reader William Lengeman for pointing this item out; he also remarks that this system would dovetail neatly with the earlier article on Onboard Threat Detection System For Big Brother Airlines. See also an interesting 1992 NSF paper on Facial Expression Understanding.

Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 2/23/2007)

Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.

| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |

Would you like to contribute a story tip? It's easy:
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add it here.

Comment/Join discussion ( 2 )

Related News Stories - (" Artificial Intelligence ")

Google Zero-Shot Translation Gives Star Trek Fans Hope
"This is your opponent!" - Gene Roddenberry, 1967.

AI Lip Reading Better Than Human, Like HAL 9000
Nothing to worry about, until computers control most vital systems.

When Did Chess Computers Seem Unbeatable?
'A human simply can't beat a robotic expert.' Clifford Simak, 1951.

Robots And AIs Will Replace Humans At 7 Percent Of U.S. Jobs
'And Mike took on endless new jobs.' - Robert Heinlein,

 

Google
  Web TechNovelgy.com   

Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!) is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for the Invention Category that interests you, the Glossary, the Invention Timeline, or see what's New.

 

 

 

 

 

Current News

Honda To Offer Car With Emotions
'All the doors in this spaceship have a cheerful and sunny disposition.'

Just Eat And Starship Bring You Food Via Robot
'...its underside was studded with grilled sensors.'

Life In Detroit's 'Agrihood' - The First In The U.S.
'countless tiny brown circles in the green fields ...occasional ruins of ancient cities...'

Artificial 'Hairs' To Enhance Senses Of Robots
'Migul had extended from each of the fingertips an inch-long filament of wire...'

The Point Of View Of An Autonomous Car
'It is safe to say that the new model almost revolutionized America in more ways than one...'

You Can't Lose The Travelmate Autonomous Suitcase - It Follows You
'...follow him as faithfully as a well-trained hound.'

ibotn Toddler-Care Mini-Robot
'She's not like a machine. She's like a person. A living person.'

Nuclear Batteries Based On Diamonds Last Millennia
'they just package it and ship it around to wherever people want it...'

Eighth Sense Emotion-Responsive Cloak
'This sensitivity to mood explains the real popularity of bio-fabrics...'

British Airways To Offer An Ingestible Sensor To Passengers
The modern way to get feedback from passengers.

Unique DNA To Foil Parts Counterfeiters
'... the only molecule, a unique protein amino acid, which could not be duplicated.'

MIT Researchers Predict The Future From Still Photos
'What I have in this camera is not a record of what you did just now but what will go on here in the next half hour...'

Mini Robot Uses 2 mm Surgical Tools
'... surgical tool - blades, tweezers, probes - so fine you could just see them with the naked eye.'

Childhood Dreams Of Space Realized! Space Junk Problem Solved!
'Give the noble daydreams a rest, you preachy rookie. Astronauts are wage slaves like everyone else!'

Writhing Robotic Tentacle Uses Laser To Chop Nuke Hardware
'... long, flexible, glittering tentacles... swinging and rattling about its strange body.'

LBNP Device Not Quite 'Artificial Gravity'
'Joe got out the gravity-simulator harnesses..'

More SF in the News Stories

More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories

Home | Glossary | Invention Timeline | Category | New | Contact Us | FAQ | Advertise |
Technovelgy.com - where science meets fiction™

Copyright© Technovelgy LLC; all rights reserved.