Making Sense of Pen Strokes

For several decades neurologists have used a deceptively simple test to help diagnose cognitive capabilities: patients are asked to draw a clock face showing a particular time.
New technology -- a ballpoint pen that digitizes as you write -- has made it possible to collect data from this test
that is hundreds of times more precise than anything that can be discerned from ink on paper, as well as enabling virtually instant analysis of the data.

A multi-site clinical study currently underway is collecting data from 7 clinics around the US. Prelminary analysis of that data suggest that it enables diagnosing conditions such as Alzheimer's
earlier than they can otherwise be detected.

We need someone for the summer to help make the program much smarter when it comes to analyzing the clock strokes, i.e., figuring out what each pen stroke is intended to be (which numeral, which hand, etc.). This is a challenging problem involving state of the art sketch interpretation and
learning, using multiple representations (eg both a spatial and temporal view of the data), and a variety of other very interesting issues.

We need someone with excellent Java skills, who can learn our large body of code and contribute to
it.

Contact Professor Randall Davis davis@csail.mit.edu for more information.