With the COVID-19 pandemic came a new need to stay socially distant from other people. Self-isolating certainly helps in that regard, but Amazon kept its doors open during the pandemic, meaning its employees couldn’t isolate themselves from the rest of the world. Instead, Amazon developed an AI that allowed employees to see if they were practicing social distancing at-a-glance.
The AI that Amazon created is appropriately called “Distance Assistant,” and though it uses machine learning, the hardware that it requires seems pretty straightforward. The Distance Assistant uses a 50-inch monitor, a camera, and a local computing device to provide workers with an augmented reality “magic mirror” they can look at to make sure they’re practicing social distancing correctly.
Here’s how it works: the AI uses machine learning and depth sensors not only to differentiate workers from the environment around them, but also to tell the distance between them and their …