Google has long dreamt of hardware that knows exactly who's watching TV, which would let them target content and ads towards the viewer. Japanese network NHK is now testing that technology in the real world, hoping to accomplish something similar.
According to New Launches, the experimental software runs on a tablet, which uses its camera to track facial expressions and estimate the mood and level of interest of the viewer.
The viewer's interest is determined by observing his face, facial expression and motion. For eg - if the viewer's expression does not change for a brief period, then he may be concentrating on the program. At the moment the differences are derived by comparing to the normal state but it is also possible to ascertain if the viewer is happy or angry.
Using that information, the television can recommend shows for the viewer to watch next, or perhaps more sinister, take advantage of their emotional state with apropos ads. Creepy. [Nikkei via New Launches]