Droning on can bring out a certain feeling…

Drones have made a big impact in the world of cinematography… but this team of researchers wanted to take it a step further. They’re trying to create a better way to get that perfect shot and truly capture emotion.

Technology meets emotion

The researchers were inspired by all the sensors and processing power that a drone has – along with its high-quality camera.

Their new drone is able to utilize camera angles, speeds, and flight paths to create a video that responds to “emotional commands”.

For instance, it could generate a video that is “exciting”, or “tense”, or “calm”. Pretty cool, right?

How it all works together


Rogerio Bonatti, a Ph.D. candidate at Carnegie Mellon University’s Robotics Institute, says, “Sometimes you just want to tell the drone to make an exciting video. We’re learning how to map semantics, like a word or emotion, to the motion of the camera.”

To bring this drone to life, Bonatti and his team gathered hundreds of various videos and thousands of spectators to figure out how to capture data that would bring out certain emotions.

Thousands of viewers gauged how the videos made them feel after watching 12 pairs of videos. Next, they gave them scores.

After it was all collected, they used the data to train a model that instructs the drone to copy the cinematography that corresponds with a specific emotion.

The future of making videos

For example, if a fast-moving shot created a feeling of excitement, then the drone would copy this by imitating the same effects to create an exciting video that the creator is looking for.

The researchers shared their paper on this tech at the 2021 International Conference on Robotics and Automation.

They hope to improve the quality of cinematography by combining tech and human emotions to help complement one another.

And Bonatti even said, “This opens this door to many other applications, even outside filming or photography.” So there’s more in store for this emotional drone…

What do you think about technology being able to mimic or study human emotions? Do you think there could be unintended consequences in the future?

Let us know down below!

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