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Handhelds Cellphones United Kingdom Technology

Real-Time, Detailed Face Tracking On a Nokia N900 139

ptresadern writes "Researchers at the University of Manchester this week revealed a detailed face tracker that runs in real-time on the Nokia N900 mobile phone. Unlike existing mobile face trackers (video) that give an approximate position and scale of the face, Manchester's embedded Active Appearance Model accurately tracks a number of landmarks on and around the face such as the eyes, nose, mouth and jawline. The extra level of detail that this provides potentially indicates who the user is, where they are looking and how they are feeling. The face tracker was developed as part of a face- and voice-verification system for controlling access to mobile internet applications such as e-mail, social networking and on-line banking."
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Real-Time, Detailed Face Tracking On a Nokia N900

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  • Re:OpenCV (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday August 21, 2010 @09:04PM (#33328816)

    Should be easy enough to add detection to reduce the chances of this occurring. By asking the person to turn their head slowly, you can make sure that the various features move according to a 3-d object rotating as opposed to a flat object rotating. Another paper that I just found suggests checking for blinking. This wouldn't solve holding up the phone to a video display showing a person turning their head or blinking, of course, but it would make it marginally more difficult to spoof. And you should always back up biometric authentication with some other form of authentication, such as a password or RFID or something.

    On a side note, this entire field is packed with patent landmines, especially from Japanese companies, so be careful before writing an "app for that" and trying to sell it.

  • by Darkness404 ( 1287218 ) on Saturday August 21, 2010 @09:07PM (#33328828)
    They are two different classes, yes, but the iPhone has a lot of developer focus, the N900 has a few hobbyist developers. Of course you "can" do more for the N900... but only if you want to code it yourself.

    In all honesty, just get a Droid, root it and be done with it. Better hardware and better support than the N900.

    The N900 was a great idea with a terrible implementation, no ability to buy it subsidized in the US at launch from any major carrier, low amount of apps, etc.

    Nokia should have just made the N900 with Android and made it be pre-rooted, it would be a lot more useful.
  • Gut reaction.. (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Anrego ( 830717 ) * on Saturday August 21, 2010 @09:45PM (#33328976)

    controlling access to mobile internet applications such as e-mail, social networking and on-line banking.

    First one kinda iffy.. second one makes sense.. third one, no way in hell!

    It's the old convenience vs. security argument. Personally for things like my money, I'm willing to go the extra mile and enter a password (or some kind of one time code if only my bank offered it).

  • Re:Gut reaction.. (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday August 21, 2010 @10:05PM (#33329050)

    If you have access to someone's email account you generally have access to every single other account they have anywhere...

  • by colinrichardday ( 768814 ) <> on Saturday August 21, 2010 @10:11PM (#33329064)

    If I'm not going to treat my phone as a subnetbook, then why do I need an iPhone in the first place? I can make calls onmy cell phone without having to pay Apple for a walled garden.

  • by dnaumov ( 453672 ) on Sunday August 22, 2010 @01:13AM (#33329660)

    As soon as Apple releases an iPhone with a slide out QWERTY keyboard, I'm in.

    Why would you bother? That's a completely different class of gear.

    iPhone is a phone with a bunch of toys, N900 is a full sub-notebook with phone capabilities tacked on.
    The former can run just a few random "apps", the latter allows you to install a regular OS with all of its functionality.

    Are you seriously this delusional?

    1) "A few random apps" = over 250,000. How many apps were there in Maemo repos again?
    2) Who the fuck is going to bother installing a "regular OS" on an N900? Next thing you will be probably suggesting people "work" in commandline on a phone or try to use Abiword on it.

    And this is coming from a person who has owned and used N900 since December.

  • What Repository? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by blackpig ( 1112913 ) on Sunday August 22, 2010 @01:58AM (#33329824)
    Where can I find this?

    exras-testing or extras-devel ?

    Surely it's not in the Ovi Store?
  • by Colin Smith ( 2679 ) on Sunday August 22, 2010 @06:42AM (#33330680)

    Course, Nokia is a phone company and that's how they market it.

    The N900 is a Linux box, which fits in your pocket, and which can talk to GSM, UMTS, WiFi, Bluetooth, FM transmitter and receiver, infrared transmitter, GPS.. Has an accelerometer, touchscreen, 5MP camera, audio (obviously), and TV out.

    Lets put it this way. The N900 is a general purpose mobile computing module with battery backup that can do everything, talk to everything, uses open standards and is easy to use.

    You can write bog standard shell/python/java/c/ASM/whatever software for it and distribute them as Debian packages.

    Anything you can think of to do with a computer, you can do with the blessing of Nokia and you can do it mobile with full knowledge of location and movement. That is the difference between open and closed.

    No offense or anything, but it's a no brainer.

  • Mod parent up! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Kupfernigk ( 1190345 ) on Sunday August 22, 2010 @06:53AM (#33330720)
    No mod points, good post.

    If you filled in the extensive questionnaire Nokia sent N900 owners, you were asked to rate the N900 on a scale from "computer with phone functions" to "phone with computer functions". Nokia understands the issue well. I don't think the N900 is anything at all to do with the iPhone/Android world. It is simply a completely different class of machine, and Nokia's low key approach suggests they regard it as a research vehicle. In exchange for supporting their research, you get a piece of equipment targeted at software developers. Yes, it's slower than an iPhone or recent Android devices. It's heavier. It's clunkier. But it's lighter, smaller and more convenient than anything else which I can use to do the same job.

Perfection is acheived only on the point of collapse. - C. N. Parkinson