AI Identifies Politicians Distracted By Cell Phone During Debates

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An artificial intelligence (AI) tool capable of measuring how much time politicians spend fiddling with their cell phones during official government meetings and debates promises to get the word out in Belgium, according to The Next Web. Created by digital artist Dries Depoorter, the system started working this Monday (5).

The software, called “The Fleming Scrollers”, has a facial recognition engine to analyze the videos of Belgian government meetings that are broadcast live on YouTube. Working closely with the AI, he is able to identify participating authorities as well as cell phones on the tables.

By monitoring the transmissions, the system can detect who is using the smartphone in real time. In addition, the program compares the time using the device with the duration of the debate, indicating whether the official spent more time distracted by the phone or paying attention to the meeting.

Importantly, the tool does not have the ability to know why the politician is using the smartphone. The device may be being used to jot down information or respond to an urgent message, for example, while it would be serving something outside of work, such as playing games or checking social media.

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