"Who is with you on your Disney vacation? An AI Game for Autistic Children"
Department: Computer Science and Engineering Advisor: Professor Mooi Choo Chuah
In the United States alone, it is estimated that 1 in 88 children suffer from Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). The range of symptoms these children exhibit vary wildly, but range from the inability to recognize social cues to a complete inability to communi cate altogether. Some have difficulty recognizing facial expressions while others have difficulty identifying people at all. In addition, there are many more children that have Emotional Behavior Disorder (EBD) or Intellectual Disability (ID).
Traditionally, the only treatments for this family of disorders is medication and different types of therapy. As a result, Professor Chua and I have been developing mobile applications targeting these special need groups in an effort to see if such application can accelerate the learning process for these individuals. In this poster, we focus on one particular application, FotoFun, which at its heart is a puzzle game where a caretaker would tag each photo from their Dropbox with information related to its location, the people in it, and what expressions they are showing. Using a very detailed algorithm that utilizes fuzzy logic and case-based AI, the application develops questions for the player about these pictures that specifically targets that player’s trouble areas. The algorithm identifies the difficulty of certain topics e.g. facial expression recognition for a player, and any sub-topics the player may have trouble telling apart, e.g. sadness and anger. Our algorithm learns from past playing experience of a user. Via such intelligence, we hope to create a more targeted and personalized experience for children with learning difficulties.
Greyson Parrelli is a junior majoring in Computer Science and Business. He has a strong passion for computing, seeing it as a wonderful tool for solving many of today’s problems. He feels that the mastering of computer science, like many skills, is a gift and with that gift comes the responsibility to use it to help others. So, when Professor Chuah approached him a year ago with the possibility of developing mobile applications for autistic children and teens, he jumped at the opportunity. It allowed him to combine his passion for developing mobile and web applications with his desire to help others. When he isn’t programming his days away, he loves spending time with his friends, playing video games, and watching movies.