‘Superpower Glass’ for autism not so super

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Joined: 23 Mar 2015
Gender: Male
Posts: 4,668
Location: Calne,England

02 May 2019, 1:40 pm

A California-based healthcare company is poised to market its ‘Superpower Glass,’ high-tech eyeglasses that use software intended to improve autistic children’s social skills.

The company, Cognoa, announced in February that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration had granted the therapy ‘breakthrough status,’ meaning it can move quickly through the agency’s approval process. And an open-label clinical trial published in March suggests that the technology temporarily improved the social skills of a group of 40 autistic children1.

But some experts, including several who declined to speak on the record, say the trial was poorly designed and the effects small and temporary.

https://www.spectrumnews.org/news/tech- ... perts-say/

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Joined: 6 May 2008
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Location: Stendec

02 May 2019, 1:46 pm

I thought this was a scam, at first; but "A new Stanford-designed technology pairs Google Glass with a face-identifying AI app that tells wearers what emotions they’re seeing" may actually work -- for some, perhaps, and not for others. Only real-world trials with real-world people will likely tell if it's useful or not.


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Joined: 2 Feb 2016
Age: 50
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Location: Yorkshire, UK

02 May 2019, 2:10 pm

This was also reported a little while ago in some of the UK science periodicals, though I've not seen any original papers.
The criticism in the article that, for many us, knowing what to do with non-verbal information may be more critical than identification, matches my own experience. But maybe useful for a certain sub-set of us, in a certain sub-set of circumstances.

Commercialisation and clinical use seems very premature. This kind of over-selling seems strong across the "AI" sector. For example, <this article> talks about IBM's relentless pushing of their Watson AI into a multitude of health sectors in the absence of any proven benefits. In <this commentary> about that article, the writer, who is a researcher of autistic linguistic traits, had this to say...

Mark Liberman wrote:
I was contacted by a Watson sales rep specializing in autism. (Apparently they had assigned every possible disorder to one or more sales reps — at least they had an international working group on Autism. Which may have done some great things, but this interaction is all I know about it.)

The sales rep tried to persuade me that everything would be much better if we only purchased Watson technology for analyzing the diagnostic interviews involved. As far as either of us knew, no one had ever used a combination of ASR and transcript understanding successfully on any clinical interview recordings, much less to deal with this particular domain. I happened to know that IBM's speech technology at that time was not capable of diarizing ADOS recordings, because I'd tried it.

Wow! We have our own dedicated marketing team - aren't we lucky? :evil:

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