Israelis seem not yet to have decided whether to go all the way with facemasks, even though wearing them is legally mandated and there are penalties for non-compliance. A survey by the Ministry of Health found that 60% of the public wear masks every time they leave home, but the rest allow themselves concessions: only covering the mouth, because it's not comfortable on the nose; only when there are many people around; or not wearing a mask at all.
Artificial Intelligence-driven computerized vision company AnyVision has announced the development of a system that detects whether or not you are wearing a mask. It consists of a screen that can be installed in a waiting room or an elevator, on which people can see themselves, with or without a mask, with a green "Like" icon if they are suitably attired, and a red thumbs down if they are not abiding by the rules.
The system is installed in several hospitals in Israel, such as at Sheba, and hospitals overseas have expressed interest in it. The system could later be installed in office buildings and other public places. It can be calibrated to give sharper warnings, such as a strong beep, but for the time being it only gives a slight nudge to behave lawfully.
At this stage, there is no transfer of information to any third party, such as the Ministry of Health or the police. Although the company has facial-recognition capability, it does not intend to use it in this instance, but only to detect whether a face is covered or not.
In normal times, AnyVision focuses on internal security, but the mask detection system is not its first development for the fight against the coronavirus. It collaborated with the Ministry of Defence Directorate of Defense Research and Development (Mafat) and Ichilov Hospital in Tel Aviv on the development of a computerized vision system for improving the assessment of coronavirus tests and reducing the exposure of laboratory staff.
Published by Globes, Israel business news - en.globes.co.il - on May 14, 2020
© Copyright of Globes Publisher Itonut (1983) Ltd. 2020