A dog that illuminates a “smart TV” monkeys in captivity that pat on a screen, a drone that gathers the sheep and cows which traient all alone … Welcome to the world of technology applied to animals.
technical innovations have invested the animal world for a long time, either through tracking devices or looking desktop.
But the fact that studies on the animal-machine interactions are interested more in how animals use the technology is much newer. Understanding this relationship is precious: it allows to better assess the welfare of the animals and try to improve
To play the cat via a smartphone
This research boom. animal-machine interaction resulted in the arrival of new products on the market, for example, to teachers to monitor the activity of their pets when they are not at home and even play with them away.
the app PetCube for smartphone provides the ability to talk to distance his animal, and even control a laser beam to play. Other applications allow teachers to learn more about health, physical activity and habits of their faithful companions. Research conducted on CompanionViz application has shown that this data collection reinforced the master-animal bond.
customized TV programs for dogs
As part of my research, I designed intelligent tracking devices for dogs, which they can access through a variety of programs screen. This experience was to discover what use dogs do television, but also what they “prefer” look.
the results are not really surprising: dogs love to follow videos that show other dogs. To go further, I followed the eye movements of these dogs face a single screen, and face a multiplicity of screens. This was to establish what the most appropriate media
The goal is to eventually design an interactive and intelligent system through which the dog will be able to choose a program. the system will evolve with the selected content. This device is not reduced, to me, a simple toy for spoiled pets. Dogs are indeed very often left to themselves – whether at home or in kennels; through this type of interactive technology, they will be more stimulated and may perhaps even fun.
This work is very recent, their results are just beginning to be analyzed. But we hope they will help improve the welfare of dogs, in which boredom can cause potentially dangerous behavior disorders.
Interacting with orangutans
these technological advances can also sensitize human species conservation issues. . Take the case of orangutans
In captivity, they need to be constantly stimulated, or they get bored and start to get depressed: the Apps for Apes application gives access to a screen touch on which they can manipulate images, but also draw or make music.
in addition to affecting their general well-being, this application informs visitors of the zoo on needs and abilities of these animals, thereby encouraging them to interact more with them; the public also takes awareness of the conservation work conducted by professionals.
Cyber-hugs for chickens
But technology can also help animals who need be physically stimulated. The surprising project of Adrian Cheok, the technology Imageneering Institute in Malaysia, has sought to improve welfare in the chicken farms. In these places, physical contact, known to be very beneficial to these animals, are virtually nonexistent.
To reproduce certain physical interactions between farmers and poultry, the researchers developed a prototype vest whose chickens were team; it allows the “caress” remotely. The process is for the breeder to receive a fake chicken with sensors, which triggers a signal via the Internet at the vest worn by the animal and reproduces the sensation of being touched.
the technology for animals can probably raise a smile. But research in this new field paving the way for groundbreaking discoveries about the behavior, cognition, animal intelligence and the ties that bind us to them.