New Computer Helps Prison Guards Understand Dog Barks

May 21, 2008 06:01 AM
by Rachel Balik
Dogs will alert Israeli jailers about prison breaks, thanks to a new computer that can determine whether a bark indicates an emergency.

30-Second Summary

Previously, Israeli guards were not using prison dogs to their full potential because it was difficult to determine whether a bark indicated an emergency or simply playful activity. In many cases, important dog barks were ignored because they sounded like normal barking that occurred throughout the day.
Now a new computer will help guards recognize when a bark needs to be acknowledged. “It relays only the barks that are significant in terms of security—barks that reveal stress or aggression in the dog,” explained the head of the Israel Prisons Service canine unit, Noam Tavor.

Other technologies have been developed to help humans communicate with dogs, although Hungarian software unveiled in January is only 3 percent more accurate than humans in interpreting dogs’ emotional states.

Headline Link: Israeli jails use dog barks to spot prison breaks

Background: Communicating with canines

Related Topic: Do dogs have feelings?


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