Eye strain is a common condition that has been affecting many people who have been staring too much at their computer screens. According to the New York Times “In the past few years, users of these services were increasingly moving to their smartphones, creating an industry wide focus on mobile. Now that we are spending our days at home, with computers close at hand, Americans appear to be remembering how unpleasant it can be to squint at those little phone screens.” (New York Times, 2020). Throughout the years, technology made a huge impact in today's society, bringing efficiency and accessibility to everyone with computing devices. The use of technology has been making people’s life easier by providing alternate ways of communicating and working, but it has also brought some negative consequences. During the global pandemic, many people had to rely more on technology for working or studying at home, leading to an exponential increment of screen time per day. The continuous use of computers may lead to health problems, such as back pain, eye fatigue and headaches. This problem could be easily solved if one were to take a break from staring at the screen and go to stretch out or stand up, but people are not being aware of the long-term negative effects that this could.
What it does
ICare is a computer program that specializes in analyzing someone's face and determining how tired that person is according to its facial expression. Using facial recognition algorithms, the program scans the user's face, and the time they have spent working on their computer, and according to their eye movement, the program will alert when the individual has worked too much and will suggest to stand up and rest for a bit.
How we built it
We created a face detection algorithm and used a neural network to compare live video and classify it. We combined multiple fields of AI to create this awesome project. The neural network's weights were saved since we don't want to train it every time the program runs. This allows us to run this program using almost the same resources as having your webcam on.
Challenges we ran into
The first challenge we ran into was the situation of how the algorithm differentiates between if a person is tired or if they have their eyes closed. The second challenge was the bias of the individual, so it can detect how tired someone is no matter the physical of the person. The third challenge was a GUI. We used a grid, in which the program will first detect the center of a face, and eliminate what's below the center, because it is not humanly possible, then look for two eyes and check them for any sign of tiredness.
Accomplishments that we're proud of
Finishing an algorithm that allowed the project to analyze someone's face, that works with any type of face. Creating a simple solution for people who suffer from excess screen time after-effects.
What we learned
We learned about the importance of taking care of our eye sites while working or using our computers and mobile devices because it is one of the main senses of a human being. It's important for people to work and continue being productive, but rest while working is the best way to maximize efficiency.
What's next for ICare
The future for ICARE is to adapt the app so anyone can have the opportunity to use it, for example, mobile devices. Also we want to be less invasive and be less draining for the user device(less device power, such as cpu, ram, etc.). We would like to add more features, such as a precise moving detection, for example, if the user does not move for a certain amount of time, can give an answer for it.