Simulate eye contact in video conferencing conversations

New software which makes it easier for video conferencing services to simulate artificial eye contact has been developed in Switzerland.

Scientists from the Computer Graphics Laboratory ETH Zurich have managed to use facial recognition software to create the illusion of eye contact during video conference conversations.

Intelligence like this has already been created, but requires the use of several cameras or mirrors and is therefore very expensive. It is believed that this simpler solution could help to ensure that artificial eye contact becomes a feature added to all levels of video conferencing.

Users of video conferencing may find it difficult to naturally maintain eye contact as this would involve staring at a camera, rather than at the image of the other person. reports that this new software is able to rotate users’ faces without rotating the background, which is something that previous solutions have been unable to do. It even works when more than one person is in front of the camera.

Claudi Kuster, one of the researchers behind the invention, believes that the software could help dramatically improve the quality of video conversations.

She told “We want to make video conference calls as similar as possible to a real meeting. The software can be user adjusted in just a few simple steps and is very robust.”