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Jun 30

Reported by Liat Clark, Wired UK, in Wired Science, June 27 2012.

UK mathematician has made a public appeal for people to phone a dedicated number so data can be gathered to hone a tool that can diagnose Parkinson’s disease by analyzing voice patterns.

Max Little, a research fellow at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, made the announcement during the opening of the TEDGlobal conference in Edinburgh, 25 June. While studying at Oxford University, Little developed an algorithm that identifies the unique characteristics present in the voice of a Parkinson’s Disease sufferer. He setup the Parkinson’s Voice Initiative in order to improve upon the machine learning system — the algorithm is built to adapt when new information is introduced and, by widening the pool (it’s hoped, with 10,000 phone calls form the public), it should become a more accurate diagnosis tool, able to identify specific symptoms amid numerous variants of speech. Continue reading »

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