Grant to Boost Study on Toddler Thinking

Posted: Updated:

A team of Indiana University researches has received a $700,000 grant to work on developing machines that "think" like toddlers. The funding from the National Science Foundation will support a study using eye-tracking technology to gather first-person image data from infants and toddlers.

Once the data is collected, it will go to a team of researchers at Georgia Tech, which will use the images to design machines that mimic toddlers' ability to recognize objects.

Psychological and Brain Sciences Professor Linda Smith says the study will help researchers "better understand the visual side of object name learning." In a release from IU, she says, "Emerging evidence from labs across the country suggests that children who are slow word learners also are slower, or weaker, in their visual object recognition skills. It could be that learning object names teaches visual object recognition or that poor or slowly developing visual object recognition limits early word learning."

The team is looking to recruit more than 100 families to gather the data through lightweight, head-mounted mini-cameras. The children will wear the cameras for six hours in a day or multiple times over a week. Researchers are looking to gather 500 hours of video.

  • Perspectives

    • States Can Foster Job Growth if Lifelong Learning is at Play

      The worlds of work and learning are merging in powerful ways, driven by the exponential growth in human knowledge. This means the abilities needed in the workplace go beyond simple “job skills” that can be learned quickly through a short-term training program. I was with Montana Gov. Steve Bullock when he released the newest National Governors Association report, “Governor’s Action Guide to Achieving Good Jobs for All Americans,” at the opening session...



  • Most Popular Stories

    • UPDATE: Nestl√© Details Fort Wayne Layoffs

      Virginia-based Nestlé USA says only 40 employees will be laid off at the company's Fort Wayne distribution center. A spokesperson for Nestlé tells Inside INdiana Business a WARN Notice filed with the state incorrectly stated the facility would close at the end of the year, affecting nearly 70 workers.

    • (photo courtesy The Times of Northwest Indiana)

      Hammond Pulls 135 Jobs from Illinois

      A Hammond factory recently vacated by Michigan-based Lear Corp. didn’t sit empty for very long. Midland Metal Products has taken over the former seat factory, having relocated from Chicago after 95 years. 

    • Northern Indiana Telemarketer Sentenced in Scheme

      A Merrillville telemarketer has been sentenced to over five years in prison for his role in a $10 million scheme to defraud mostly elderly victims in the United States. Carlin Woods, 35, pleaded guilty in 2017 to a count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud, one count of wire fraud and another conspiracy count to commit money laundering. 

    • 'Hottest Real Estate Markets' Include Indiana Locales

      Fort Wayne just opened its brand new riverfront Promenade Park to pomp and pageantry, hoping to make it a draw to Indiana’s second largest city. But now the Allen County community has something else to celebrate. The editors of declared Fort Wayne as the hottest real estate market in July for the entire country. 

    • (Image courtesy of Horseshoe Casino Hammond.)

      Indiana Casinos to Begin Sports Betting

      A pair of northwest Indiana casinos will soon add sports wagering to their offerings. Horseshoe Hammond Casino and Ameristar Casino East Chicago are both set to open sports betting areas at their respective casinos ahead of the kickoff to the 2019 NFL season.