Automatic Inference of Driving Task Demand from Visual Cues of Emotion and Attention

Open Access
Conference Proceedings
Authors: Alessandro SoroAndry Rakotonirainy

Abstract: Sensing the mental, physical and emotional demand of a driving task is of primary importance in road safety research and for effectively designing in-vehicle information systems (IVIS). Particularly, the need of cars capable of sensing and reacting to the emotional state of the driver has been repeatedly advocated in the literature. Algorithms and sensors to identify patterns of human behavior, such as gestures, speech, eye gaze and facial expression, are becoming available by using low cost hardware: This paper presents a new system which uses surrogate measures such as facial expression (emotion) and head pose and movements (intention) to infer task difficulty in a driving situation. 11 drivers were recruited and observed in a simulated driving task that involved several pre-programmed events aimed at eliciting emotive reactions, such as being stuck behind slower vehicles, intersections and roundabouts, and potentially dangerous situations. The resulting system, combining face expressions and head pose classification, is capable of recognizing dangerous events (such as crashes and near misses) and stressful situations (e.g. intersections and way giving) that occur during the simulated drive.

Keywords: Affective, Social, Computing, Automotive, in-Vehicle, Emotion, Facial Expression, Head Pose

DOI: 10.54941/ahfe100740

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