Rosalind W. Picard

Inquire About This Speaker

Affective Computing Authority and Expert on Emotional Machines Impact on Marketing and Medicine; MIT Media Lab’s Affective Computing Research Group Director; Co-Founder, Affectiva & Empatica

Biography

Emotions are vital to our everyday experiences; they’re essential to helping us discern what matters – to ourselves and to others. Yet, when it comes to understanding emotions and their influence on everything from behavior and learning to customer loyalty and decision making, “we’re not as good as we think we are,” says Dr. Rosalind Picard. But with her help and that of the rapidly growing field of affective computing, humans and technologies alike are making important progress in creating better ways to measure and communicate emotion.

MIT Professor, and founder and director of the MIT Media Lab’s Affective Computing research group, Picard first coined the term “Affective Computing” in her seminal book of the same name (MIT Press, 1997). She explained then, “for computers to have some of the advanced abilities we desire, it may be necessary that they comprehend and, in some cases, feel emotions.” The age of emotional machines is coming. Today, the field has its own academic journal, international conference, and professional society and groups devoted to its study around the world. Picard is its foremost authority – and one of its most influential champions.

Picard co-founded Affectiva, Inc., to deliver the technology to help measure and communicate emotion, quickly ushering in an era in which businesses are increasingly using sophisticated machine learning technology to better understand consumer tastes and preferences. It also paved the way for breakthroughs in medical applications, including autism, epilepsy, depression, PTSD, sleep, stress and dementia. Named one of seven “Tech SuperHeros to Watch” by CNN, Picard is also co-founder of Empatica, Inc., which is creating the medical-grade wearable sensors and analytics designed for health care, based on her inventions and patents.

Entrepreneur, scientist, engineer and active inventor, Picard is a woman of numerous talents, strengths and achievements. She is a popular and engaging speaker, and has given more than 100 keynote talks. She’s also authored or co-authored more than 250 scientific articles and chapters – many of which received best paper prizes – spanning computer vision, pattern recognition, machine learning, human-computer interaction, wearable sensors and affective computing.

Picard is co-director of the MIT Media Lab’s Advancing Wellbeing Initiative and faculty chair of MIT’s Mind+Hand+Heart Initiative. She has served on numerous international and national science and engineering program committees, editorial boards and review panels. She also interacts regularly with industry and has consulted for many powerhouse companies, including Apple, AT&T, HP, i.Robot, Merck, Motorola and Samsung.

Picard holds a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering with highest honors from the Georgia Institute of Technology, and master’s and doctorate degrees – both in electrical engineering and computer science – from MIT.

Rosalind W. Picard is available for paid speaking engagements, including keynote addresses, speeches, panels, and conference talks, and advisory/consulting services through the exclusive representation of Stern Speakers, a division of Stern Strategy Group®.

Videos

Books & Research

Affective Computing

(MIT Press, 1997)

Intro Video

Video Thumbnail

Emotion Technology

A-Z Name

Picard, Rosalind

Biography

Emotions are vital to our everyday experiences; they’re essential to helping us discern what matters – to ourselves and to others. Yet, when it comes to understanding emotions and their influence on everything from behavior and learning to customer loyalty and decision making, “we’re not as good as we think we are,” says Dr. Rosalind Picard. But with her help and that of the rapidly growing field of affective computing, humans and technologies alike are making important progress in creating better ways to measure and communicate emotion.

MIT Professor, and founder and director of the MIT Media Lab’s Affective Computing research group, Picard first coined the term “Affective Computing” in her seminal book of the same name (MIT Press, 1997). She explained then, “for computers to have some of the advanced abilities we desire, it may be necessary that they comprehend and, in some cases, feel emotions.” The age of emotional machines is coming. Today, the field has its own academic journal, international conference, and professional society and groups devoted to its study around the world. Picard is its foremost authority – and one of its most influential champions.

Picard co-founded Affectiva, Inc., to deliver the technology to help measure and communicate emotion, quickly ushering in an era in which businesses are increasingly using sophisticated machine learning technology to better understand consumer tastes and preferences. It also paved the way for breakthroughs in medical applications, including autism, epilepsy, depression, PTSD, sleep, stress and dementia. Named one of seven “Tech SuperHeros to Watch” by CNN, Picard is also co-founder of Empatica, Inc., which is creating the medical-grade wearable sensors and analytics designed for health care, based on her inventions and patents.

Entrepreneur, scientist, engineer and active inventor, Picard is a woman of numerous talents, strengths and achievements. She is a popular and engaging speaker, and has given more than 100 keynote talks. She’s also authored or co-authored more than 250 scientific articles and chapters – many of which received best paper prizes – spanning computer vision, pattern recognition, machine learning, human-computer interaction, wearable sensors and affective computing.

Picard is co-director of the MIT Media Lab’s Advancing Wellbeing Initiative and faculty chair of MIT’s Mind+Hand+Heart Initiative. She has served on numerous international and national science and engineering program committees, editorial boards and review panels. She also interacts regularly with industry and has consulted for many powerhouse companies, including Apple, AT&T, HP, i.Robot, Merck, Motorola and Samsung.

Picard holds a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering with highest honors from the Georgia Institute of Technology, and master’s and doctorate degrees – both in electrical engineering and computer science – from MIT.

Rosalind W. Picard is available for paid speaking engagements, including keynote addresses, speeches, panels, and conference talks, and advisory/consulting services through the exclusive representation of Stern Speakers, a division of Stern Strategy Group®.

Speech Topics

The Future of Emotion and AI

Why would anyone want to give computers emotional abilities? As one expert asked, “Isn’t that the last thing that separates humans from machines?” This talk will introduce the skills of emotion that are critical for intelligent functioning and describe why we should give some of these skills to some kinds of computers, wearables, smartphones, smart cars, and more. How might these emotionally-intelligent technologies help make our lives better – improving opportunities to learn and be healthy? What risks might we encounter from emotionally-intelligent AI? Are there lessons here that we can use to enhance our own human-human relationships? What is the biggest challenge for AI to solve in the coming years to bring about greater good for people?

Technology for Empathy

It has been said that nothing is as important in today’s troubled word as eliminating prejudice and misunderstanding, and replacing these with communication and empathy. Is this a uniquely human challenge? Or, are there ways in which technology might help us enhance human empathy? This talk will illustrate several ways in which emotions that we may not even be able to communicate verbally, might be shared and might lead to better understanding, by using technology that helps measure and communicate emotion. These technologies have implications ranging from improving marketing and customer experiences to better understanding an audience, a child, a non-speaking friend with autism, or perhaps someday, even your own spouse.

The Future of Wearable Technology for Emotion and Health

Could you live a healthier and happier life if computers could measure and help communicate emotion? Rosalyn Picard, creator of wearable sensors and other emotion-recognizing technologies, has been exploring this space for decades. In this presentation, she examines questions sparked by her journey, including:

  • When do computers recognize facial expressions better than people – or can they?
  • Are your emotions hidden from your smartphone while it rests in your pocket?
  • How can wearable sensors collect continuous data related to autonomic activation – helping us understand stress, anxiety, pain and perhaps other activity deep in the brain?
  • Is it true that some neurological activity, deep in the brain, could have correlates that show up elsewhere on the body?

This presentation highlights cutting-edge research and examines the implications of wearable sensing, for autism, anxiety, depression, sleep, epilepsy, and more. Picard also describes her next big research focus: how might these new capabilities help prevent the future #1 disease burden?

Media

Array

Books & Research

Array

Recommendations

“Roz brought the house down at our Global Summit event in 2018. Her engaging style, use of great visuals, and heartwarming, emotional storytelling were just what our audience needed to get excited about making a difference in the world.”

– Tom Keppeler, Director of Communications, InterSystems

Social Media

Similar Speakers

Array