Face-reading computers on way to reduce power bills

New software switches off the display when the user is not looking

22nd July 2009: If you have the habit of leaving the computer on after Skype-chatting with your friends back home, help is at hand.

Scientists in the UK have logged on to a programme of development to come out with new software that detects whether or not you are looking at your computer. It switches off the display accordingly.
The researchers believe this could help cut energy bills and significantly reduce people’s carbon footprint.

The software has been developed by Peter Hopton of Sheffield, UK, and launched by his company VeryPC last week.

The system uses open-source face-detection software linked to a webcam. It monitors the presence of someone’s face in front of the screen and reacts to it.

With this, the computer users can set their screens to sleep after a set period. The new software, however, has failed to find favour with a set of users, who believe it interferes with the way they use their computer. If you are watching a video, it could interrupt the viewing, so you have to disable it, they assert.

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