Understanding what other animals are speaking is always a difficult task for us. As a human, we don’t know their language, so it’s impossible to communicate with them. Hey ! does I say impossible, sorry for that cause in the world of AI nothing is impossible.
Dr. Con Slobodchikoff professor at Northern Arizona University is working on an instrument powered by artificial intelligence to learn and translate animal’s vocals and facial expressions into simple English. Dr. Con has worked on an algorithm that turns the noises made by dogs and cats into the English language.
Dr. Con has spent thirty years observing the vocalizations and behavior of prairie dogs. He saw that prairie dogs communicated using different pitches to indicate predators of different sizes, types, and colors, for example, prairie dogs make high-pitched calls to warn others of predators. Animal behavior experts believe that the research of Dr. Con will definitely allow pets and their owners to speak.
In 2013, Dr. Con had published ‘Chasing Doctor Dolittle: Learning the Language of Animals’, a study on the unique language characteristics of animals. In his work, he claims animals and humans will be able to communicate effectively in just ten years’ time.
He has founded a company called Zoolingua. Zoolingua is solely focused on developing an instrument to translate pet sounds, facial expressions, and body movements into human language. The aim of Zoolingua is to allow humans to communicate with other animals.
Dr. Con has studied hours of footage of dogs engaged in a wide variety of behavior – including barking, growling and howling. The team plans to teach an AI algorithm about these communication signals.
Their various barks and body movements by using thousands of videos of prairie dogs. Dr. Con hopes that by using machine learning, computers will be able to tell us what a dog’s growl or the wag of the tail really means.
A recent report for NBC News suggests that technology can solve any problems in the animal world, around 3 million cats and dogs are euthanized every year. Other uses for the technology will help farmers and ranchers to identify pain levels in animals, a practice that currently lacks reliability.
There are other professors who are trying to do the same thing as Dr. Con. One professor from Emory University is training dogs to sit still through brain scans to get some insight. Whereas Neuroscientist Dr. Gregory Berns says he’s already been able to uncover evidence that dogs don’t just see us as caregivers, they also see us as friends.
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