One of the main problems associated with the spread of coronavirus is that COVID-19 tests are not available to everyone. For this reason, the total number of cases worldwide can be much larger than in official statistics. It is enough to look at what is happening in the United States: when there were enough tests for coronavirus, 20 to 25,000 people were infected every day. To solve this problem, researchers have developed a free experimental application in which artificial intelligence determines whether a person can be the carrier of this dangerous infection.
I immediately notice that this service is still in the development phase and cannot be used as a replacement for medical tests with COVID-19. It is not approved by any medical organization and in particular by the WHO. Therefore, with the first symptoms of the disease, it is better to consult a doctor and not try to find the diagnosis with such applications.
1 coronavirus test online
2 Voice Corona Virus Test
2.1 Audio test
2.2 Language test
3 How is cough different from coronavirus?
Corona virus test online
The COVID Voice Detector audio test by scientists from Carnegie Mellon University uses speech recognition and artificial intelligence. To understand how it works, simply go to the application website from a computer or mobile device. The main thing is that the microphone works on it. Since the service is not adapted for the Russian language, instructions for correct use are given below. And then I'll tell you how it all works.
COVID Voice Detector was developed in collaboration with researchers and developers from voca.ai and tell.ai who specialize in language analysis.
First you have to follow this link and register. All you need is a username and password. You cannot leave emails if you do not want to restore the forgotten password later.
On the same page below you will find interesting points that you have to agree to. So you agree to the transmission of your voice recordings to Carnegie Mellon University. In addition, you will not mind if these records can be used for commercial purposes and other services in the future. If this does not bother you, you can register and continue with the next step.
It is also suggested to fill out a short questionnaire and state age, gender, height, weight and race. In the latter case you have to choose Caucasian – in English this is the standard name for the white breed.
There are still a few questions to be answered: do you have a cough, sneeze, have a fever, have you had medical tests for coronavirus and are you also a carrier (or if you have had one).
You can then conduct an experimental test. In all phases, first click the microphone icon, record and click again to end the recording. In the first phase, you have to cough 3 times.
Then speak the beech “A” for as long as possible – without stopping until you have enough breath.
Similar steps must be followed with the letters "E" and "O".
Next, the application will ask you to count between 1 and 20 in English. If you can't count in English, you can do it in Russian as well, since the application does not analyze the sounds themselves, but the breathing pauses you take when counting.
The same applies to the alphabet. If you don't want to pronounce English letters, pronounce the letters of the Russian alphabet. This is the last step before starting to analyze the results.
After completing the language test and analyzing the result, you will see something like a loading bar. According to the researchers, the smaller the value of this scale (the farther to the left it is), the less likely you are to carry the COVID-19 virus. I seem to be safe so far.
Voice corona virus test
And now the main thing is how it works and can you trust the results? Determine why a particular step in this test is performed.
You started coughing three times – Artificial Intelligence analyzes the sounds of a cough and compares them to the results of other users, including those who have had a coronavirus test or who generally have a confirmed diagnosis. To this end, you filled out a questionnaire with age, weight and symptoms of the disease.
All of these "AAAA", "LLCOO" and "EEE" are needed by the AI first of all to measure the lung volume by recording. But I read an interview with the makers of the application for futurism and mentioned there that the recording corrected even if you stopped the pronunciation – for example because of a cough. This information is also analyzed by artificial intelligence when building the result.
Score and alphabet. This is another test to understand how many numbers or letters you can say at once and without pausing to sneeze or cough.
As soon as the application receives all the necessary data, it compares your recording with the voice data of patients who have confirmed COVID-19. It then detects the signs of coronavirus and assesses them with a probability of 1 to 10 in proportion to the probability that they are present in humans. The researchers do not hide the fact that while the accuracy of the test is rather low, the neural network can learn from more initial data when more people (both sick and healthy) use the service. Then the results will be more accurate, but I would not yet trust my health to artificial intelligence. However, medical tests approved by WHO so far will be more effective.
The rating that the app displays is an indicator of how well your voice matches the voices of other patients with COVID that we tested. This is not a medical test or guide. The main goal of our efforts and the website at the moment is to collect as many voice recordings as possible that we can use to improve the algorithm, says one of the developers of COVID Voice Detector.
How is a cough with coronavirus
Where do the researchers get the results base for patients with coronavirus from? To collect this data, a team of scientists turned to colleagues around the world. These colleagues helped them not only collect audio recordings from patients with COVID-19, but also from patients with other viruses so that they could teach the algorithm to detect differences. They even watched news videos to find patient interviews and add their results to the AI dataset.
The cough of a patient with COVID is very clear, the authors say of the application. “The virus affects the lungs so much that respiratory functions and some other important parameters are violated and they are visible in the voice, even if the infected person simply says a series of letters.
It seems to me that despite the fact that this method of diagnosing the disease is still quite "raw", it can in the future bring about a real revolution in the determination of the virus in a particular person. Obviously, COVID-19 is not the last test for humanity (Spaniards and other diseases prove it). If a person can look for infections using a smartphone or tablet in the future, this will help stop the virus from spreading. Let's see what happens to the COVID Voice Detector in the future: Developers will definitely need time before this test is more or less accurate.