MIT is no stranger to conducting worthwhile research as they recently came up with a piece of software that would help people practice their interpersonal skills with a computer. Researchers have now developed a new algorithm that can accurately measure the heart rates of people from ordinary digital video.

The way the software works is by analyzing small head movements which accompany blood pressure we experience when our heart’s contract. It also uses measures color changes in the skin due to blood circulation. In the demo video above, MIT researchers take a look at how our heads move when blood is being circulated through our body, even going as far as to speed up the motion of our heads to show just how much movement there is.

The algorithm developed by MIT researches was able to consistently measure the subject’s heart rate within a few beats per minute when compared to results from electrocardiograms (EKGs). The algorithm was also able to provide estimates of time intervals between beats, which is a measurement that can be used to help identify patients who are at risk for cardiac events.

Filed in Medical >Videos (web). Read more about and .

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