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Expression made possible with emoticon keyboard
Upper Lobby
Expression made possible with emoticon keyboard
Gretchen Whitney High School
IntroductionTrapped in silence. Patients with conditions like Locked-in Syndrome, those in emergency care, and those in intensive care share the struggle to communicate. Such individuals face intense agony... Read more

Description

Introduction
Trapped in silence. Patients with conditions like Locked-in Syndrome, those in emergency care, and those in intensive care share the struggle to communicate. Such individuals face intense agony in conveying their feelings or desire. The pace of innovation is limited by lack of intelligent machines that are available outside of research settings and yet affordable.

Methods
By selecting emoticons using eye tracking, gaze fixing, and machine learning, patients will be given the ability to express themselves effortlessly and relatively quickly. Emoticons will be displayed on a grid with the columns delineated as A, B, C…and the rows labeled as 1, 2, and 3… For instance, the happy face emoticon may be located at A1. Eye tracking will function as a mouse as the user is able to navigate between the various screens. Brain-Computer Interface (BCI) will allow the patient to “select” their desired icon, as the patient visually pulls icons that he/she desires. BCI has the capacity to decode brain waves utilizing the data from an Electroencephalogram (EEG), which records electrical activity in the brain. Artificial Intelligence (AI) can rapidly fulfill the need of accurately and precisely reaching the conclusion in a fraction of a second—like the fully functional brain. With the assistance of brain waves, eye-tracking mechanisms, and AI, the device will be able to determine overlapping areas thus leading to the selection of the desired emoticon. The use of emoticons will ensure that communication is fast and easy. A text-to-speech command will enable long-distance communication with caregivers when the selected icon is verbally stated. With this technology, patients will also have the capability to send text messages to their caregivers with the input of texting software. Most importantly, this technology will cross the cultural and language barrier as knowledge of a certain language (i.e. English) becomes immaterial. Symbols will allow patients to be able to express how they are feeling (scared emoticon), where they want to go (house emoticon), and even what they want to eat (burger emoticon). In the form of a headset, this technology will revolutionize the lifestyle of patients.

Conclusion
With this approach, individuals will no longer be limited in terms of communication. This concept will provide a voice and reduce frustration associated with person-to-person interactions. Emoticons are concise and straightforward, which will be especially helpful for patients. Even a single symbol can provide a significant amount of insight. The patient will not have to struggle to express their feelings, desires, or needs. This, in turn, will result in better care of the patient and an improved outlook.

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