Researchers believe that they may have found a way to help overcome one of the most common fears.
For many people, one of the most terrifying things that they ever have to face is speaking in front of an audience, but researchers have now come upon a way to use wearable technology to assist with this effort and to help to make it less stressful.
The idea is to use a special intelligent user interface that is installed into smart glasses and augmented reality headsets.
The researchers are from the University of Rochester’s Human-Computer Interaction Group have come up with an intelligent user interface that is meant to be used through wearable technology, more specifically, smart glasses. It has been designed to provide speakers with real-time feedback on their speaking rate, the modulation of the volume of their voices, and other features, while providing only the slightest level of distraction.
The idea is to help to boost the presentation skills of the wearable technology user and enhance speaking confidence.
The system has been named “Rhema”, which is the Greek word for “utterance”. It was described in a paper that the research team presented at the Intelligent User Interfaces (IUI) conference of the Association for Computer Machinery. The feedback that the wearables provide to a speaker can help him or her make changes in real time in order to properly adjust the volume of his or her voice, or to alter the speaking rate. It can also provide reassurance that the speaker is doing well and should continue.
According to computer science assistant professor, Ehsan Hoque, the senior author of the paper, he found the system helpful while giving his own lectures during the previous term. He explained that “My wife always tells me that I end up speaking too softly.” He pointed out that “Rhema reminded me to keep my volume up. It was a good experience.” Hoque feels that the practice has assisted him in keeping more aware of the volume of his voice, even at times when he does not actually have the wearable technology on. It provided him with effective habit building.