Association for the Advancement of Affective Computing

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Interest Groups


Information about Special Interest Groups (SIGs) within the AAAC.

Speech SIG

Welcome to the Special Interest Group Emotion Recognition from Speech.

The ambition of this group is to provide latest news and discussion related to acoustic and linguistic analysis of the speech signal in search of affective cues. Further, we aim to support, initialize, and organize events helping to advance current research and bring together people working in the field. In the near future we will announce further new activities and introduce tools and data of your potential interest. The group focus is sought in (but not limited to) the following areas:

  • Recognition of emotion from acoustic parameters
  • Recognition of emotion from linguistic parameters
  • Recognition of non-linguistic vocalisations (such as e.g. laughter)
  • ASR of emotional speech
  • General recognition of paralinguistics from speech
    In any case do not hesitate to contact us for your own contributions. Looking forward to hearing from you.

Content and Events

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Past Events

Computational Paralinguistics Challenge (ComParE), Interspeech 2017

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Patent SIG

Objectives of this SIG

  1. Become a central knowledge base of Patents based on emotion related technologies
  2. Enable users to see how and where patents are being applied for, and by whom (which industries)
  3. Enable users to track growth and trends (if enough patents are available)
  4. Enable users to avoid patent infringement in their own work
  5. Encourage members to find and reference any “prior art” that applies to patent claims; this will have the following effects:
    1. Discourage “frivolous” patents
    2. Promote members as subject matter experts with the ability to assist patent examiners
    3. Ensure valid patents are truly novel and unique
    4. Educate members on what can and cannot be patented in their own work (or spin outs)
    5. Help those in research and industry under threat of litigation by “patent trolls”

Central Knowledge Base

This serves as a way to easily access relevant patents or patent applications. Currently perhaps the single most difficult element of the patent process is actually finding relevant patents. Due to terminology differences (where wording is intentionally vague), language differences, and the overwhelming number of patents to search, finding relevant patents is almost impossible. By collectively filling a database with relevant patents we can save users tremendous amounts of time and empower the community with a reasonably complete set of knowledge of the current state of the patent landscape.

The Who, What, Where and When

The community can be empowered by understanding who (individuals and corporations) is actively pursuing patent applications in this area. In addition they can see what types of patent are being applied for (i.e. software, core neuroscience, hardware related, HCI), which countries are most active and at what point in time where the applications made.


Armed with the data from the database the community as a whole can track and see possible trends in the commercialization of emotion technology. Are patent applications increasing? Are there specific countries that are more active than others? Are there specific corporations or industries in which emotion technology is being more widely applied? Is the industry growing?

Avoiding Infringement

Many of the community will want to start or grow commercial enterprises and many Universities will want to spin out research groups into commercial enterprises. One of the key elements of any technology/innovation based venture is to avoid infringing on existing patents. Of course the key element of this is to actually know about existing patents and the knowledge base can be an invaluable resource to enable this.

Prior Art References

This is the core of the endeavor. Much like Wikipedia can use the wisdom of a crowd of experts to shine a light of truth on a subject, community experts can collectively show patent claims to be valid or invalid by using their own knowledge of “prior art”. This effort becomes a collective defense for the whole community in case anyone or group finds themselves subject to litigation by patent “trolls” which is becoming increasingly problematic and stifling innovation.


Personality SIG

Content coming soon…

Entertainment SIG

Content coming soon…

SIG Ethics

Ethics, Goals and Societal impact in Affective Computing have already been a central subject during the early days of AAAC and a topic for a special issue of our journal T-AC. The aim of this SIG is to continue this excellent initiative by creating a group of discussion and brain-storming. The AAAC provides an excellent place to establish a more intense dialogue on ethics, goals and societal impact with the researchers and industrial partners in affective computing not just because having an ethics and societal impact brain stormings are in the “air du temps ” but because these subjects are of the utmost importance for this field.

Motivations for the SIG Ethics

Scientific results in affective computing and the first products such as speech analytics (emotion detection) in call centers, sentiment analysis in website, or affective robot for elderly people inspire questions around the ethics, the goals and the deployment of innovative products that can change our lives and consequently, the society. The emergence of such systems that keep us more and more connected to machine will modify the way we socialize, our reasoning capabilities and our behavior. This technology promises new forms of affective relations and interactions, as well as new market opportunities. Affective computing systems have a large field of applications: conversational agent, robot, e-bot, etc. Such systems are envisioned to interact with humans (with children, adults and frail people such as for example very young children, autistic or elderly) in a seamless non verbal and verbal dialogue in a variety of real-life contexts such as at home, at the hospital, on your phone, in your car, at the classroom, in public transports with different roles such as assistive, companion or still seller systems. Such systems are also envisioned to survey humans for safety reasons (for example in car). The deployment of such affective technology will lead to profound modifications of the way people interact with systems. Achieving seamless multimodal interaction with multiple people and planning for executing system’ speech, movement, expressions or still gestures in response to observed and interpreted user behavior requires an inherently multidisciplinary approach. We need a new interdisciplinary mix of computer science, social/psychological sciences and engineering to understand such affective Interaction, and the substantial impact of affective computing systems will have in terms of new applications. As researchers in the affective computing community, it is important for us to have these discussions and to enlarge our community. We propose to question/interview/challenge international experts who are still not members of the AAAC community for example experts in sociology, psychology, neuroscience or philosophy about specific ethical questions.

Goals of the SIG Ethics

The ambition of the SIG Ethics is to collect the main ethics, goals and societal impact questions of our community. We will first synthetize all the documents resulting of the AAAC’s root endeavours on these subjects. We also will initiate a bibliography on new links, papers, reviews, interviews on these topics on this web-site of the SIG group. We aim to write a document about the ethical issues in affective computing together with a set of recommendations for our specific domain and some elements for a roadmap to overcome any problems we identified. We will also collect the existing legal issues that we can applied in affective computing (ex : data privacy law, criminal and civil law). As the starting point we create a survey that will be send to all the members of AAAC to collect information for building a first draft of the document on the main questions. The results of the survey will be first summarized on the website, then discussion will be programmed by mail/skype meeting.

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Association for the Advancement of Affective Computing

The AAAC is a professional, world-wide association for researchers in Affective Computing, Emotions and Human-Machine Interaction. All rights reserved © 2021