Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Listening device that could save lives

09.01.2002


A DEVICE that records and recognises what people are discussing at meetings – and alerts them if decisions are being re-made – is being developed with the help of information systems experts at Staffordshire University.



Staffordshire and Lancaster Universities have been jointly awarded £714,000 by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) to carry out the cutting-edge research project which will be partly based on artificial intelligence (AI) technology.

Professor Albert Alderson from Staffordhire University’s School of Computing’s Information Systems Group, is leading the project for Staffordshire University, while Professor Ian Sommerville is heading the project for Lancaster.


The aim of the three year study is to avoid the reworking of management decisions – a common problem, particularly in big organisations, which can lead to potential disaster.

To observe decision-making in action the researchers will visit industrial partners, including navigation experts Terrafix based in Stoke-on-Trent, and QSS Ltd, a requirements engineering company in Oxford.

“Often in big projects people make a decision and then they forget all about it so another decision is made about the very same issue,” explained Professor Alderson.

“This is obviously counter-productive and very wasteful in time and other resources. It can even lead to fatal consequences, such as the launch of the space shuttle Challenger which exploded shortly after take-off.

“This disaster is prime example of one decision being made but at a later point a contradictory decision being agreed - with calamitous results. That is why this research project is potentially so important and will have a wide ranging impact on any group which plans to make important decisions.”

Professor Alderson explained that the project will be based around a laptop computer which will be used by the person taking minutes at any meeting.

The computer will be fitted with state-of-the-art technology, such as a graphics pad and software that can capture and understand handwriting.

Another application to be used would be speech recognition software. Also being considered is the use of a device which can automatically recognise the words scrawled on a whiteboard.

By combining these applications the system will be able to record what is being discussed at any particular meeting and hold it in its memory.

The system – which will be networked to a larger and more powerful computer – will also be able to monitor what is being said at any subsequent forums and can alert those attending if they are discussing a matter previously debated on which a decision has already been agreed.

James Tallentire | alphagalileo

More articles from Information Technology:

nachricht Stable magnetic bit of three atoms
21.09.2017 | Sonderforschungsbereich 668

nachricht Drones can almost see in the dark
20.09.2017 | Universität Zürich

All articles from Information Technology >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: The pyrenoid is a carbon-fixing liquid droplet

Plants and algae use the enzyme Rubisco to fix carbon dioxide, removing it from the atmosphere and converting it into biomass. Algae have figured out a way to increase the efficiency of carbon fixation. They gather most of their Rubisco into a ball-shaped microcompartment called the pyrenoid, which they flood with a high local concentration of carbon dioxide. A team of scientists at Princeton University, the Carnegie Institution for Science, Stanford University and the Max Plank Institute of Biochemistry have unravelled the mysteries of how the pyrenoid is assembled. These insights can help to engineer crops that remove more carbon dioxide from the atmosphere while producing more food.

A warming planet

Im Focus: Highly precise wiring in the Cerebral Cortex

Our brains house extremely complex neuronal circuits, whose detailed structures are still largely unknown. This is especially true for the so-called cerebral cortex of mammals, where among other things vision, thoughts or spatial orientation are being computed. Here the rules by which nerve cells are connected to each other are only partly understood. A team of scientists around Moritz Helmstaedter at the Frankfiurt Max Planck Institute for Brain Research and Helene Schmidt (Humboldt University in Berlin) have now discovered a surprisingly precise nerve cell connectivity pattern in the part of the cerebral cortex that is responsible for orienting the individual animal or human in space.

The researchers report online in Nature (Schmidt et al., 2017. Axonal synapse sorting in medial entorhinal cortex, DOI: 10.1038/nature24005) that synapses in...

Im Focus: Tiny lasers from a gallery of whispers

New technique promises tunable laser devices

Whispering gallery mode (WGM) resonators are used to make tiny micro-lasers, sensors, switches, routers and other devices. These tiny structures rely on a...

Im Focus: Ultrafast snapshots of relaxing electrons in solids

Using ultrafast flashes of laser and x-ray radiation, scientists at the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics (Garching, Germany) took snapshots of the briefest electron motion inside a solid material to date. The electron motion lasted only 750 billionths of the billionth of a second before it fainted, setting a new record of human capability to capture ultrafast processes inside solids!

When x-rays shine onto solid materials or large molecules, an electron is pushed away from its original place near the nucleus of the atom, leaving a hole...

Im Focus: Quantum Sensors Decipher Magnetic Ordering in a New Semiconducting Material

For the first time, physicists have successfully imaged spiral magnetic ordering in a multiferroic material. These materials are considered highly promising candidates for future data storage media. The researchers were able to prove their findings using unique quantum sensors that were developed at Basel University and that can analyze electromagnetic fields on the nanometer scale. The results – obtained by scientists from the University of Basel’s Department of Physics, the Swiss Nanoscience Institute, the University of Montpellier and several laboratories from University Paris-Saclay – were recently published in the journal Nature.

Multiferroics are materials that simultaneously react to electric and magnetic fields. These two properties are rarely found together, and their combined...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

“Lasers in Composites Symposium” in Aachen – from Science to Application

19.09.2017 | Event News

I-ESA 2018 – Call for Papers

12.09.2017 | Event News

EMBO at Basel Life, a new conference on current and emerging life science research

06.09.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Penn first in world to treat patient with new radiation technology

22.09.2017 | Medical Engineering

Calculating quietness

22.09.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Hope to discover sure signs of life on Mars? New research says look for the element vanadium

22.09.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>