While voice assistants like Siri, Alexa, and Google Assistant are excellent for a variety of voice-based activities, there are occasions when you need to conduct certain tasks without bothering others, such as in a library or an office quiet zone. Two Cornell University researchers created a silent-speech recognition wearable camera to assist users in secretly delivering voice commands to smart devices. Let’s take a closer look at the specifics.
Researchers create a wearable camera that recognizes silent speech.
Cheng Zhang, an assistant professor of information science at Cornell University’s Ann S. Bowers College of Computing and Information Science, and Ruidong Zhang, a doctoral student at the same university developed the special silent speech recognition camera.
“Imagine when your hands are occupied or you simply don’t want to reach out to your smart devices to interact with them, you might want to use voice control. However, if you are in a noisy place or in a meeting, voice control is not efficient or socially appropriate. This is where silent speech comes into place,” explains Cheng Zhang, one of the researchers in the project.
It’s been termed the “SpeeChin” since it employs an IR (infrared) camera to capture a user’s chin and neck movements in order to detect a variety of speech commands, even when they’re whispered or merely mouthed. The gadget is worn as a necklace and hangs just below the user’s neck, with the IR camera pointing upwards, towards the chin.
According to the researchers, the camera captures the movements of the chin and the neck of a user to recognize what they are trying to say. Hence, you can whisper or simply move your lips as if you are saying a certain word or a phrase for the device to pick up the exact command you are trying to convey. You can check out the video below to see SpeeChin in action.
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According to the researchers, the silent-speech recognition camera can distinguish 54 English phrases and basic voice instructions, as well as 44 Mandarin Chinese words and phrases. They used 20 people to test SpeeChin, and the gadget was able to recognize English orders with 90.5 percent accuracy and Chinese commands with 91.6 percent accuracy. When the participants moved while delivering silent orders to the camera, however, the accuracy rates dropped.
In terms of the device’s availability, the researchers must certainly improve SpeeChin’s dependability in the future. As a result, a quiet speech-recognition wearable camera like SpeeChin may take some time to become commercially accessible. So, how do you feel about SpeeChin? Do you believe it would be a commercially viable device? Let us know what you think in the comments section below.