Are you tired of going on dates and wondering if you should smash or pass? Well, a new way may soon be able to help you make that decision. According to a study published in the IEEE Transactions on Affective Computing journal, artificial intelligence can now determine how well a date is going based solely on a person’s vital signs.
Researchers at the University of Cincinnati trained a computer using data from wearable technology to identify the type of conversation two people are having based on their physiological responses. Sixteen pairs of participants were asked to discuss topics they could strongly agree or disagree on before having four different conversations: a positive conversation where they happily discussed a topic they agreed on, a negative conversation where they unhappily discussed something they disagreed on, and two conversations about an agreeable topic where each person took turns leading the discussion.
The AI was able to determine between the four different conversation scenarios with a 75% accuracy rate – even when the conversation was occurring virtually over Zoom. The results rely on the phenomenon known as “physiological synchrony,” which can show how engaged people are by how their heart rate, respiration rate, and perspiration rates all align. Lead researcher Iman Chatterjee explained that this phenomenon is likely a part of evolutionary adaptation. Humans have evolved to share and collaborate, which can manifest in the subconscious.
Synchrony also correlates with how much empathy a patient gets from a therapist or engagement students feel with teachers. Chatterjee said, “It is certainly no coincidence. We only notice physiological synchrony when we measure it, but it probably creates a better level of coordination.”
Previous studies have shown that physiological synchrony can tell how well two people will work together to accomplish a task and can probably even be used to see which people in a company or organization work best in a group setting. Study co-author Vesna Novak, an associate professor of electrical engineering in UC’s College of Engineering and Applied Science, said, “A modified version of our system could measure the level of interest a person is taking in the conversation, how compatible the two of you are, and how engaged the other person is in the conversation. Our next step is to see how much nuance we can separate. We’ve shown that AI has the ability to identify positive versus negative conversations, but can you separate shades of gray that humans wouldn’t discern?”
This study is the first of its kind to use AI to measure a person’s vital signs during a conversation to determine how well it’s going. The idea of an app that can tell you how well a date is going based on your vital signs may seem like science fiction, but it could soon become a reality. It’s easy to imagine a future where people use wearable technology to track their vital signs during a date and receive instant feedback on how well the date is going.
Of course, there are concerns about privacy and the potential misuse of this technology. It’s essential to ensure that people’s personal information is protected and that this technology is only used for ethical purposes. However, if used responsibly, this technology could have a significant impact on our social lives. It could help people connect with others more effectively and reduce the stress and anxiety that often comes with dating.