To help face COVID-19 and ensure both health and well-being, the European service provider in product innovation Verhaert Masters in Innovation developed ‘Hai’: a digital demonstrator platform, based on user-centered Artificial Intelligence.
New platform Hai for safer behavior
After 3 months of lockdown, strong regulations, and economic struggle, we’re carefully going back to our “normal” life. It’s a challenge to find the right balance between the well-being and health of the population, and a steady recovery after this critical period.
To provide an answer to this challenging situation, Verhaert developed a demonstrator of a digital platform that uses AI-based Computer Vision to extract essential metrics from any room or area. ‘Hai’ can bring COVID-related safety awareness to the public, allowing them to make informed decisions. It’s not a surveillance system, but a tool to empower people with relevant data about a specific space and to nudge them in a positive way towards a safer behavior.
Components of the AI system
The digital platform consists of 3 components:
- Cameras to record a live feed of the people present in a particular area, the people entering and leaving the place.
- An edge AI system to process the footage on-the-fly. The system extracts the number of people, how many of them wear face masks, and measures the physical distance between individuals.
- Online dashboard to display this information in a friendly and educational way.
Let’s say you work at your desk and you want to get something from the cafeteria. On the dashboard, you can see whether or not you should wait a while until fewer people are present at that place.
Artificial Intelligence algorithms
Verhaert’s AILab trained the AI algorithms to calculate the number of people present in any space and detect how many of them are wearing face masks. What about the security and protection of private data? The cameras’ live feed never leaves the AI system. The edge AI device treats the information locally and only transfers processed and anonymous data to the dashboard. No human being sees, stores or transfers any images, safeguarding everyone’s identity and privacy.
Hai is about our health
The online platform is a tool to organize ourselves and our spaces, it doesn’t judge individuals. It allows us to access real-time information from anywhere to make informed consent whether or not to enter a room. Hai will display the total number of people in an area versus the maximum quantity allowed. Additionally, it creates a heat map of “close-encounters” (distance less than 1.5 meters) giving valuable information for cleaning, disinfecting, optimizing walking flows, and detecting bottlenecks.
Hai is about you
Hai will recognize in the near future your gestures, so if you wave hello to the camera or raise a thumb, Hai will respond interactively. The digital platform has been created to demonstrate how AI technology can help us in managing our presence and common spaces better during COVID. Ensuring we all stay safe, not only at home.