On May 15, 2014, the US Patent & Trademark Office published patent applications from Apple that touch on the iPhone knowing your mood, assisting you while on holidays, understanding your biometric readings, organizing your iMessages with a better interface and advance FileMaker.
Apple's Patent-Pending Invention Relates to Determining Preferential Device Behavior
One of Apple's latest patent applications is titled "Determining Preferential Device Behavior" which covers systems, methods and computer program products for machine learning to determine preferential device behavior.
A user's device may be personalized based on observations of the user's behavior and profile classes or clusters derived from a machine learning process. The user's experience with the device is enriched because the device adapts to the specific preferences of the user and not to a category of users.
For example, a user profile may be created on the client device that may be used to personalize device settings according to, for example, the user's interests or mood. Additionally, information or content displayed, played, or otherwise presented by or on the device may be personalized to the user's interests, mood, etc.
Some examples of unsupervised learning processes include but are not limited to: clustering (e.g., k-means, mixture models, hierarchical clustering), blind signal separation using feature extraction techniques for dimensionality reduction (e.g., principal component analysis, independent component analysis, non-negative matrix factorization, singular value decomposition) and artificial neural networks (e.g., self-organizing map, adaptive resonance theory).
Example of the Machine-Learning System
In one of Apple's examples they note that through continued use of client device 104a, the client device may learn about the home region of the user. A home region is a geographic area where a user lives. It may be a neighborhood, region, city, state, country or hotel one is staying at while on vacation. The Client device, such as an iPhone, may also learn about the language being used in the home region.
When the user exits the home region (e.g., by exiting a geofence established around the user's home region), the iPhone may provide sightseeing recommendations, foreign call-roaming charges and any other information specific to the user's home region.
As soon as the user enters his home region, a wake-up alarm correlated to a previous alarm setting behavior could be suggested to the user. When sending messages to people in the home region, the client device may adapt text message language to the language spoken in the home region.
In Apple's patent FIG. 7A noted below we're able to see a block diagram of an exemplary concept learning process for user mood. In this example, a truth reference may be a perceived mood of the user.
On an iPhone, the perceived mood may be determined using facial recognition technology. For example, an image of the user's face may be captured by the camera and various facial landmarks may be analyzed using facial recognition technology to determine the user's mood.
Additionally, the iPhone may obtain the user's speech and analyze it using speech recognition technology to determine the user's mood. The analysis may occur, for example, while the user is participating on a telephone call. Another opportunity for capturing speech samples could include speaking to Siri.
Other sensors that may be included in the system include a temperature sensor, a biometric sensor, or other sensing device, to facilitate related functionalities. This sounds like it could apply to a health related application and/or device.
Perhaps this is the first of many patent applications to follow over time on this subject matter, because as a standalone application it never really reveals its full purpose, especially in how it relates to a user's mood. If the facial recognition software determines that I'm sad, is it going to get Siri to tell me a joke?
While the patent application provides various scenarios involving people at a mall, people thinking of going to a movie and a person who likes sports, it never provides you with a conclusion as it pertains to this application of determining your behavior. For instance, if I like hockey, will my iPhone list the games playing that night? I don't know, there's no conclusion as to what the application will actually do for the sporting fan. So perhaps some of these answers will come our way in a follow-up patent filing.
For those wanting to explore this invention further, check out Apple's patent application 20140136451.
Apple wants to help you Organize your Messaging
Your iPhone can display a conversation with one or more contacts. The conversation can include messages to and from the one or more contacts. Although contact names may be displayed, it may not be immediately apparent to a user who the contacts are, and messages may be inadvertently sent to the wrong contacts. If this has ever happened to you, then Apple is working to help you out.
Apple's patent FIG. 2 noted above illustrates a GUI of a messaging application such as iMessage. The GUI can include content (#203) associated with a conversation of the messaging application. One or more contacts may be associated with the conversation, and FIG. 2 illustrates four contacts associated with the conversation.
Names (#205) of some or all of the associated contacts can be displayed in the GUI. Additionally or alternatively, one or more messages can be labeled with a contact name (#207) of the sender of a message.
The content (#203) can be displayed over a background associated with the one or more contacts of the conversation. For example, four contact images (#209, 211, 213, and 215) can each be associated with one of the contacts. Contact image #209 specifically can be a photo or other representation of a first contact of the one or more contacts, and contact image #211 can be a photo of a second contact of the one or more contacts. In some examples, the contact images can be tiled in the background, as illustrated in FIG. 2. Additionally, the size of each image can be adjusted so that all the contact images can fit on the interface. Other arrangements of the contact images are also possible.
For more on this simple invention, see patent application 20140136987.
One last mildly interesting patent application published today by the US Patent and Trademark Office possibly covers advancements being made to FileMaker regarding "Object Connections."
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