We were inspired by several companies who had workplace programs to hire workers on the autism spectrum, including SAP. We believe that we could make a positive impact in society and reduce the tech gap by helping socialize autistic children in a fun and engaging way.
What it does
Emotive is a web-app that helps children recognize and express emotions. Children complete one of two tasks. One type of task is to view a picture and follow the instructions: "Make a happy face," for example. Upon successfully completing the task, we will share some other words that are associated with the emotion of being happy. The other task is to view a short clip and make an expression that matches the emotions in the clip. Upon completing this task, we will provide a short explanation of emotion in the clip.
Both tasks use a laptop webcam and facial recognition to measure the expression on the child's face. There is a progress bar that fluctuates based on how accurate the facial expression is, and only once it passes a certain threshold, is the activity complete.
We plan to monetize and expand this by reaching out to media companies like Disney, Netflix, Nickelodeon, and more. Companies would pay Emotive to host short PG friendly clips that would be used as exercises.
How we built it
We used OpenCV to identify the users face and emotions and mongoDB to store login information for the medical workers and children as well scores. Flask was used for backend and for the database to interact with the frontend. Passwords are hashed so if anyone hacks us they wont be able to encrypt user's passwords.
Challenges we ran into
We had some technical and team difficulties, and had to start late unfortunately. Connecting the backend game to the frontend was also quite difficult.
Accomplishments that we're proud of
Given that we started late, we're very proud of the amount of work we completed.
What we learned
We learned about the challenges that those with autism face when working with technology and how we need to better improve our design choices to suit everyone's needs and capabilities.
What's next for Emotive - Learn to express your emotions
Given the short time frame we had, it was difficult to conduct thorough research. We'd like to continue researching this space so that we can better understand the problem and ensure our solution meets the needs of most autistic children.
Then we'd like to refine our product and test the efficacy on participants. If we receive positive feedback, we'd like to market this to media companies to grow and expand Emotive.
Note: While there are many ways to describe people with autism, we went with "on the autitism spectrum" and "autistic children" based on our research on what language is the most inclusive.