It's hard to imagine a creepier educational technology than "FocusAssist," a new feature announced by online training company Mindflash last week. Designed to be used in corporate training courses on iPad, FocusAssist, according to Businessweek:
uses the tablet's camera to track a user's eye movements. When it senses that you've been looking away for more than a few seconds (because you were sending e-mails, or just fell asleep), it pauses the course, forcing you to pay attention--or at least look like you are--in order to complete it.
Yeesh. FocusAssist forces users to pay attention to Mindflash's videos.
Even Mindflash's announcement of the feature sounds icky:
The capability, dubbed FocusAssist, monitors trainee attention and pauses a training course in the Mindflash application when trainees look away. Organizations concerned about trainee distraction and compliance during self-paced remote training can now have greater confidence that critical information is being reviewed and understood.