WP3 – Perception of Users and Environment

The overall goal of WP3 is to sense an older adult and his environment and extract the perceptual information that is required to support the functionality of ACANTO devices in particular the FriWalk. More specifically after planning of a social activity and during its execution we will collect and provide all kind of necessary information that is relevant and required to facilitate a high level of situational awareness. In addition for the clinical application a plurality of physiological signals is sensed, including heat rate, gait analysis, body and head pose as well as facial action. Furthermore our novel concept of collaborative localisation allows for insights beyond the viewing angle of a single walker by sharing of information between walkers and supports group activities like a joint museum tour.
The following figure illustrates the targeted objectives of WP3.

Objective 3.1: “360 degree user perception and modelling”

Perception of the user, including location, physiological and emotional state, level of attention, as well as her/his current activities/actions.

Objective 3.2: “Perceiving the environment and social context”

Awareness on what is happening in the environment that is possibly relevant to the user in particular with respect to the social context.

Objective 3.3: “Collaborative sensing”

Cross-platform sensing and information sharing allows for insights beyond the viewing angle of a single walker. Integration of user, environment and social context perception into a holistic view will yield a perfect basis for any activity execution and monitoring logic (WP5) as well as later on for analysing and evaluating of executed activities in a retrospective manner. Prior to the integration the functional blocks will be designed modularly which allows to support devices with different hardware capabilities that offer diverse level of support tailored to persons with varying mental and physical conditions.

Our intended contribution for each objective is summarized in the next figure together with the name of the partner that has the lead for a given task.

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Whenever we sense the user it is of utmost important to us to perform it in an unobtrusive way, since we want to ease an older adult’s life and not put an additional challenge on her/him by introducing the necessity to care about a device that needs to be operated and charged etc. While we still consider wearable’s that are nowadays increasingly popular in the consumer market, in parallel we are seeking for a solution in which most of the information can be acquired without the older adult to wear anything, which is the case for our contactless heart rate measurement from facial video data.

In the clinical scenario besides the acquisition of physiological data that allows for optimizing therapy we also want to enrich well-established test procedures like SPPB (Short Physical Performance Battery) test by investigating ways to automate them including innovative paradigms in human machine interaction and gathering of additional valuable information during test execution.

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SPPB (Short Physical Performance Battery) test sequence.

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Process steps to automate SPPB test #3 “Chair Stand Test”.

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