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This Startup at CES Uses Machine Learning to Alleviate Alzheimer’s

One of the most excruciating consequences of Alzheimer’s disease is that patients lose their memory, failing to remember the names of their loved ones, or just forgetting who they are altogether.

A US startup is trying to make that problem less severe, with a blend of Augmented Reality and machine learning.

New Jersey-based ThirdEye was among the select companies featured at CES 2018’s opening event CES Unveiled. Founded in 2016 by computer science and economics graduate Nick Cherukuri, the company has created a headset fitted with state-of-the-art AR technology.


Just slightly bulkier than a pair of common sunglasses, ThirdEye’s specs— called X1— can overlay any sort of visual content on the real world, aided by a powerful neural network.

The neural network makes it possible, for instance, to use the spectacles for educational purposes, showing information about a city’s landmarks or historic buildings when their wearer looks at them. But this ability to recognise objects has much wider applications.

“If you have, say, 100 pictures of someone, you can input them in the device,” explains Cherukuri. “The headset will recognise that person when they are in front of the glasses, and will show a label with their name.”

This is particularly helpful for Alzheimer’s patients, who tend to forget the identity of the people surrounding them.

“They’ll be able to take images of their family members, input them into this real time neural network, and train the glasses to show their names and other key information such as: ‘This is Steve, your husband,” Cherukuri says.

He adds that this would be only one of the several potential healthcare applications of ThirdEye glasses. For instance, another feature could be used to help the visually impaired read a text (by magnifying it automatically as an AR layer); the spectacles can also be used for “tele-healthcare”, allowing doctors to monitor vulnerable patients in remote communities through the glasses.

The device is slated for release in March 2018.

Images via ThirdEye


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