Saturday, May 25, 2024

SoftBank Robotics unveils Pepper’s new feature: mask detection

People’s lifestyle has changed a lot these days due to COVID-19 epidemic. Wearing a mask in busy and closed places, following the social distance and hygiene rules have become mandatory.

To support businesses and public places, SoftBank Robotics Europe unveils a new feature with Pepper: AI Face Mask Detection. The friendly humanoid robot stands in public places, and thanks to its cameras, it can scan the faces of a group of people to check if they are wearing a mask. It will also warn those who do not wear masks.

A green circle will appear around an image of anyone wearing a mask
A green circle will appear around an image of anyone wearing a mask. Credit: SoftBank Robotics Europe

The solution is based on an OpenCV image recognition AI and Single Shot Detector. During the interaction, Pepper displays on his tablet a green or red circle around the face depending on whether the person is wearing a mask or not. A green circle will appear around an image of anyone wearing a mask, and a red circle will appear around the image of a person without a mask. It will also give the warning to wear the masks correctly.

This system’s mission is to sort out who wears a mask and those who don’t, with a high recognition score, even on fabric masks with intricate patterns and color schemes.

On the other hand, making a face scan for this process also alerted non-governmental organizations. However, SoftBank Robotics explained that robots do not record and store any personal data.

Earlier last month, Pepper and fellow bot Spot performed at a baseball stadium in Japan to support the players of the Japanese baseball team. It also learned some astounding magic tricks from the world’s leading iPad magician Simon Pierro.