Personal and Ubiquitous Computing

, Volume 16, Issue 2, pp 169–191

Monitoring children’s developmental progress using augmented toys and activity recognition

  • Tracy L. Westeyn
  • Gregory D. Abowd
  • Thad E. Starner
  • Jeremy M. Johnson
  • Peter W. Presti
  • Kimberly A. Weaver
Original Paper

Abstract

Previous research has established the connection between the way in which children interact with objects and the potential early identification of children with autism. Those findings motivate our own work to develop "smart toys," objects embedded with wireless sensors that are safe and enjoyable for very small children, that allow detailed interaction data to be easily recorded. These sensor-enabled toys provide opportunities for autism research by reducing the effort required to collect and analyze a child’s interactions with objects. In the future, such toys may be a useful part of clinical and in-home assessment tools. In this paper, we discuss the design of a collection of smart toys that can be used to automatically characterize the way in which a child is playing. We use statistical models to provide objective, quantitative measures of object play interactions. We also developed a tool to view rich forms of annotated play data for later analysis. We report the results of recognition experiments on more than fifty play sessions conducted with adults and children as well as discuss the opportunities for using this approach to support video annotation and other applications.

Keywords

Content analysis Automatic indexing Toy design Object-play Multimodal wireless sensing Pattern recognition 

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag London Limited 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Tracy L. Westeyn
    • 1
  • Gregory D. Abowd
    • 1
  • Thad E. Starner
    • 1
  • Jeremy M. Johnson
    • 2
  • Peter W. Presti
    • 2
  • Kimberly A. Weaver
    • 1
  1. 1.School of Interactive ComputingGeorgia Institute of TechnologyAtlantaUSA
  2. 2.Interactive Media Technology CenterGeorgia Institute of TechnologyAtlantaUSA

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