Scientists have programmed computers to read human expressions and to tell whether one is in pain. "Each facial expression is made up of many different components — a twitch of the mouth here, a widening of the eyes there — some lasting only a fraction of a second," says Simon Lucey of Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization.
"Our computer program looks at these components, matches them against a list drawn up by expert psychologists and decides what expression just flitted across a face," says Lucey, a computer scientist. The system uses a Web cam and a technique called machine learning. After being programmed with what to look for and what it means, each observation taken or analysis performed is used to refine the computer's technique so it gets better at its assigned task over time.
From India Talkies
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