According to new research by the University of Alberta computing scientists, artificial intelligence algorithms can accurately detect depressed mood via the sound of your voice. A phone app can track your mood and tell when you are depressed.
Ph.D. student Mashrura Tasnim and Professor Eleni Stroulia in the Department of Computing Science conducted the research. The study is based on past research that indicates that the timbre of voice has information about our mood.
Tasnim and Stroulia developed a methodology using the standard benchmark data sets that uses various machine-learning algorithms to identify depression accurately using acoustic cues.
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The main aim as explained by Stroulia is to create meaningful applications from this technology.
“A realistic scenario is to have people use an app that will collect voice samples as they speak naturally. The app, running on the user’s phone, will recognize and track indicators of mood, such as depression, over time. Much like you have a step counter on your phone, you could have a depression indicator based on your voice as you use the phone.”
According to the Government of Canada, almost 11% of Canadian men and 16% of Canadian women experience depression in their lives. Also as per the Canadian Mental Health Association, 3.2 million Canadian youth of age 12 to 19 are at risk of developing depression.