Waking up is hard sometimes. If you’re like me, you set an extra couple of redundant alarms just to make sure you’re really up in time for work (and sometimes still fail). Microsoft’s Garage team thinks it has a better idea for keeping you up though: machine learning.
The Mimicker Alarm app – Android only for now – starts out as any other alarm clock, allowing you to set multiple times and wake you up in standard noisy fashion. The difference is that it makes sure you stay up, by forcing you to play one of three games to prove your alertness. It does so all while showing off Microsoft’s machine learning prowess.
For example, the first ‘game,’ called Express Yourself, asks you to take a selfie that matches whatever emotion the app prompts you to imitate, making clear use of Project Oxford, the company’s emotion detecting AI tool.
Meanwhile Color Captures asks you to find an object of a random color, while Tongue Twister takes advantage of the company’s voice recognition chops by asking you to repeat a tongue twister.
If you don’t successfully complete one of the tasks, Mimicker will assume you’re still sleeping, and thus continue to ring away. That might sound like more brainpower than most of us are able to summon in the morning, but better that than sleeping through your next important meeting.