New theory of complex emotions

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We updated Roger Hargreaves’s Little Miss and Mr. Men universe as a suggestion to include some of our new emotions. Illustration: Zohar Lazar

 If You Can Say It, You Can Feel It Some scientists believe we have infinite emotions, so long as we can name them.

Sometime last year, I came across the word hangxiety, a neologism for hangover-induced anxiety. I cringed when I read it; it felt so phony.

The most mental distress I’d ever experienced during a hangover was some light teasing in a group chat. And then, last fall, the morning after a night of drinking, I woke up with a racing heart and a constricted feeling across my chest, as if I’d been sleeping under a dozen weighted blankets. I thought about the things I’d said and done the night before, and the physical sensations intensified.

This happened again, and then again. I haven’t had a hangover in months, largely because I’m terrified of them now. Was this always the way my brain and body responded to hangovers? Or did learning about hangxiety somehow influence the way I experience a hangover? I’d like to think I’m not that suggestible, but some emerging, somewhat controversial research on how and why we feel our feelings argues that language doesn’t just describe a feeling. It can also change it.

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AI is getting more in touch with your emotions

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EmoNet, a neural network model, was accurately able to pair images to 11 emotion categories.

The EmoNet research study demonstrates how AI can measure emotional significance.

Artificial intelligence might one day start communicating our emotions better than we do. EmoNet, neural network model developed by researchers at the University of Colorado and Duke University, was accurately able to classify images into 11 different emotion categories.

A neural network is a computer model that learns to map input signals to an output of interest by learning a series of filters, according to Philip Kragel, one of the researchers on the study. For example, a network trained to detect bananas would learn features unique to them, such as shape and color.

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Advances in emotional computing will give businesses an unfair advantage

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Pepper will understand human emotions.

Softbank CEO Masayoshi Son announced last week they have developed an amazing new robot called Pepper. The most amazing feature isn’t that it will only cost $2,000, or that Pepper is intended to babysit your kids and work the registers at retail stores. What’s really remarkable is that Pepper is designed to understand and respond to human emotion.

 

 

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In-car facial recognition system can detect road rage

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The facial recognition system uses an infrared camera system to identify the driver’s emotions.

Researchers at the École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne or EPFL are collaborating closely with PSA Peugeot Citroen and developing an in-car emotion detection system designed to watch out for emotions like anger and disgust. (Video)

 

 

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Google’s Futurist Ray Kurzweil is working on a search system that can understand your emotions

Futurist Ray Kurzweil

Futurist Ray Kurzweil has some ambitious plans for search at Google. Kurzweil joined Google at the end of last year as director of engineering and he became famous for creating the first text-to-speech software. He’s also been called “the ultimate thinking machine.”

 

 

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