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System Measures Stress In Emergency Callers' Voice

CmdrTaco posted more than 3 years ago | from the no-i'm-not-fine dept.

Communications 238

cylonlover writes "Chances are that if you're calling 9-1-1 (or 9-9-9, or whatever it is where you are), you're not likely to tell the operator that your case isn't all that urgent, and that it can wait. The problem is, sometimes emergency dispatch centers are so overloaded with callers – all of them stating that they need assistance right now – that some sort of system is required in order to determine who should get help first. Dutch researchers claim to have developed just such a system, which analyzes callers' voices to determine how stressed-out they are."

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238 comments

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In other news (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35571066)

Afghani freedom fighters organise a denial-of-service attack by playing back Frodo in the Lord of the Rings to the telephone.

Calibration? (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35571072)

How well does this thing work with child callers, or those with developmental disabilities who do not respond 'normally' to emergency situations?

Re:Calibration? (5, Insightful)

warp_kez (711090) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571112)

Or those who have been in "these" situations before and now how to go about the call calmly.

Re:Calibration? (4, Funny)

C_amiga_fan (1960858) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571260)

Or those who just don't give a fuck. "Yeah my asshole husband who beats me had a heart attack, and lost consciousness. (yawn). We live at 10 main street. Please hurry. Or not. Whatever."

This sounds like the Dutch are "rationing" their healthcare. What they should be doing is the same thing the ISPs should be doing - laying more lines (and people) to handle the load, rather than capping service.

"rationing" healthcare (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35571624)

I'm getting tired of this trope, especially as it's used as keyword to get immediate panic reflex.

The fact is, in any given society, resources for healthcare will be limited, and generally smaller than what is perceived as necessary by the public.
This will automatically cause a need for prioritizing, as some medical threats are more immediate than others, and should be treated first.
These researchers have been looking into a way for making that more effective. However, it has not been implemented! So 'the Dutch' aren't doing anything here.
Given that waiting lists have been exceedingly long in NL for quite some time now, not due to lack of funding per se, but lack of trained personnel, it's also more than a little irrelevant.

Lastly, I'm just going to assume you live in the U.S.A here, since you're using the rationing healthcare rhetoric. May I remind you that this is done on a large scale in your country already? Only in your case, it isn't rationed based on need, as any decent person would want, but based on how much money you have. Yes you can, in a few select places in the U.S.A, get the best possible healthcare, but only if you have the enormous amounts of money that's asked for it. Normal people have to do with less healthcare than any given Dutch person gets, for much more. Rationing is not so much our problem, as yours.

Re:Calibration? (3, Insightful)

nospam007 (722110) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571922)

"This sounds like the Dutch are "rationing" their healthcare."

Yep, first the heart attacks and aneurysms, then the teens who started fireworks from their ass.

Re:Calibration? (5, Insightful)

Jawnn (445279) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571320)

Exactly right. This sounds like a bad idea, in that it automatically penalizes those who, by virtue of training, experience, or simply an abundance of mellowness, don't present the physiological response this system is designed to detect. Conversely, it rewards those who are wound too tight or who have simply led very sheltered lives and are completely undone when the water heater starts to leak.
Cool technology, totally misapplied.

Re:Calibration? (4, Insightful)

Rakshasa Taisab (244699) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571362)

Yeah... Hysterical people now get better emergency aid than those of us who manage to remain calm in stressful situations?

The Freaked-Out Future of Humanity (4, Insightful)

dazedNconfuzed (154242) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571406)

Natural selection will provide some interesting long-term consequences.

Re:Calibration? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35571870)

What I fail to see is how they can achieve an error rate of 4,2% just by analyzing the stress of the caller's voice. If this number is true, wouldn't about 75%(20% might be non-urgent self-controlled "calm" calls) of all the callers have trouble managing to remain calm during stressful situations? That's unthinkable to me!

Re:Calibration? (1)

somersault (912633) | more than 3 years ago | (#35572204)

That's unthinkable to me!

Stressing you out a little, is it? ;)

Re:Calibration? (1)

nospam007 (722110) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571944)

"Hysterical people now get better emergency aid than those of us who manage to remain calm in stressful situations?"

In hospitals, yelling, hysterical people get also more of the good stuff.

Re:Calibration? (1)

TheCarp (96830) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571460)

That was my first thought. Not even just people who have "been in these situations" but, anyone who keeps their head calm in a situation.

A couple of years back I had a case of walking pneumonia (clearly, I didn't know, hence 'walking'). One night, after poker, while hanging out with some friends, I coughed and covered my face with my hands. As I pulled my hands away from my face, I saw them absolutely covered in blood.

Everyone around me freaked. I just calmly got up, and started getting ready to go to the hospital. As I am doing this, everyone around me seemed to take my calmness as me not considering the situation as serious. So of course, they felt the need to bother me and repeatedly tell me how serious this was, and even as I am putting shoes on and grabbing my jacket, are still advising me that I should definitely go to the hospital.

I have to wonder, if I call 911 with one of these systems, and start calmly describing the situation, are they going to now see how not-stressed I am and ignore me? Will someone die because I didn't totally freak out calling for help?

This seems like a good idea, but, I do have to wonder if it wont be relied on too heavily.

Re:Calibration? (1)

somersault (912633) | more than 3 years ago | (#35572242)

I think saying "I coughed up a load of blood into my hands" is probably enough of a clue to an emergency response .. uh.. technician that you need urgent help.

Re:Calibration? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35572078)

Yeah, like a member of the emergency services themselves calling for someone they found on the street or something.

Re:Calibration? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35571338)

Consider someone in shock or with massive blood loss that is slowly and calmly passing into the abyss.

They would be prioritized as minor issues even though these represent the most serious cases.

Re:Calibration? (2)

dov_0 (1438253) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571456)

How well does this thing work with child callers, or those with developmental disabilities who do not respond 'normally' to emergency situations?

Or how does it work with people who just don't flip out easily? As an ex firefighter, I don't stress out easily. Panicking or stressing out is for AFTER the emergency when you have time. When I have to make an emergency call, I'm not enormously stressed at all - I'm just focusing on getting across the required information as clearly as possible.

Re:Calibration? (0)

poetmatt (793785) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571942)

Actually, what about the reverse of the general measure? Don't they ask people to remain calm in an emergency? If someone is going into shock and losing blood fast, but someone else is on the phone and calm, are they just going to put them on hold, then?

Re:Calibration? (1)

arth1 (260657) | more than 3 years ago | (#35572260)

Or the roughly 10% of the population with deep voices, who already have problems enough as is with automated voice systems?

Overt Reactions (4, Insightful)

pinkushun (1467193) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571078)

I had a girlfriend who's mom would freak out at the most silly things, and not so silly too, accentuating her voice to make this overtly apparent.

Should have seen her when I accidentally ran over her cat. Very unfortunate, and people react very different in panicked, or life threatening, situations.

I wonder how well this detection will hold up, 4% margin of error seems quite low.

Re:Overt Reactions (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35571136)

Should have seen her when I "accidentally" ran over her cat.

fixed that for you.

Re:Overt Reactions (1)

Anrego (830717) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571168)

That was my first reaction as well. They arn't clear on whether that error rare is the systems ability to recognize voice stress, or the corrolation of voice stress to emergency severity.

We all know people who fall apart when something goes wrong... and we (or at least I) know people who could calmly tell the operator that they have cut their leg off with a chainsaw and would greatly appreciate it if someone could come down and give them a hand.

And then there are children, who can react in an even wider variety of extremes.

Re:Overt Reactions (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35571264)

people who could calmly tell the operator that they have cut their leg off with a chainsaw and would greatly appreciate it if someone could come down and give them a hand.

Why on earth would you want a HAND when it's the LEG that's cut off?

Re:Overt Reactions (1)

robot256 (1635039) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571682)

Hey, if I could trade a leg for a third hand, I'd give it some serious consideration. Sure, I'd have to recharge the wheel-chair every night and keep a crutch around, but boy would it make soldering easier!

Re:Overt Reactions (1)

ciderbrew (1860166) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571960)

you could make yourself a robo leg. You'll be back on your feet in no time...

Re:Overt Reactions (3, Insightful)

AlienIntelligence (1184493) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571206)

I had a girlfriend who's mom would freak out at the most silly things, and not so silly too, accentuating her voice to make this overtly apparent.

You modded him Troll? wtf???

Mod him up, I was going to post the same thing.

There are people that are just HORRIBLY unable to maintain
themselves at the least bit of stress.

I remember running to shrill blood curdling screams to find
out the person screaming was upset at something very trivial.
Like literally spilled (milk) liquid.

I've broken up with someone because their reaction level
to minor issues was off the chart and I figured in a LTR
I would be at a major disadvantage if I was any further
than driving distance from home.

So... good luck with that.

-AI

Re:Overt Reactions (1)

Hazel Bergeron (2015538) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571492)

Should have seen her when I accidentally ran over her cat.

Why don't you detail the value system you want to impose on others so we can learn from you how serious we should or shouldn't find that?

Re:Overt Reactions (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35571574)

Should have seen her when I accidentally ran over her cat.

Why don't you detail the value system you want to impose on others so we can learn from you how serious we should or shouldn't find that?

the value system to be imposed would definitely include the belief that nigger jokes are hilarious. thank you for asking, you pussy.

Re:Overt Reactions (1)

gstoddart (321705) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571756)

Should have seen her when I accidentally ran over her cat.

While I'm willing to concede that maybe she was a little excitable, I'm pretty sure if you run over most people's pet they're going to have a pretty big stress reaction ... that doesn't seem like a very fair example. :-P

Re:Overt Reactions (1)

Rob the Bold (788862) | more than 3 years ago | (#35572128)

I had a girlfriend who's mom would freak out at the most silly things . . .Should have seen her when I accidentally ran over her cat.

Well, replace the word "accidentally" with "repeatedly" and the word "cat" with "daughter".

Nice, but... (4, Insightful)

ArAgost (853804) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571080)

This is very nice from the signal analysis perspective, but the implication that emergency call may be delayed if the caller is not stressed is a bad idea

Re:Nice, but... (2)

gstoddart (321705) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571468)

This is very nice from the signal analysis perspective, but the implication that emergency call may be delayed if the caller is not stressed is a bad idea

I was kind of thinking the same thing ... if the person making the call is an off-duty first-responder, you would expect them to know exactly what they need, but have less stress in their voice because they're better trained.

Delaying your response because someone is cool under pressure might actually cause some new problems.

Re:Nice, but... (1)

maxume (22995) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571784)

Maybe the analysis is a little more sophisticated than all these posts are guessing and can detect underlying tension, even if the caller is not hysterically screaming (I have no idea, just saying that people are awfully quick to associate relatively calm callers with low voice stress, which I don't think is so obvious).

Then there is the part where this is only going to factor in when the call centers are overloaded, a situation where something that only works a lot of time can still do lots of good.

Re:Nice, but... (4, Interesting)

gstoddart (321705) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571920)

Then there is the part where this is only going to factor in when the call centers are overloaded, a situation where something that only works a lot of time can still do lots of good.

Well, Slashdot being comprised of a large number of cynical, jaded people who have worked in engineering related jobs ... we look for the ways this will go horribly wrong first, and then decide if those outweigh the planned benefits. If your false-positive/false-negative rate is too high, your system becomes junk.

This reminds me a lot of polygraphs ... voice-stress analysis might be a lot smarter than we expect it to be ... but, there's a reason why polygraphs aren't admissible in many places in court. It's vague and subjective in a lot of cases. As a result, associated technology isn't always readily trusted by some of us.

Re:Nice, but... (1)

maxume (22995) | more than 3 years ago | (#35572130)

I can't see using the system to deny callers access to an operator, so the system doesn't have to work particularly well to reduce the average response times for time sensitive emergencies.

(I suppose some people would freak out and say that adding a minute to any response time is unacceptable, even if the overwhelming typical case is that it reduces response times, but I'm willing to write those people off as crazy)

Stress != Urgency (5, Insightful)

Greymalkin99 (1990878) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571084)

How well people deal with emergency situations varies hugely. This system would prioritise a 5 year old ringing about a huge splinter she just got over a military veteran reporting a 3 car pileup with limbs everywhere. Can't beat human judgement in a job as important as this.

Re:Stress != Urgency (1)

Onuma (947856) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571214)

Heh...that made me think of a giant junkyard construct with numerous metallic tentacle-limbs.

And what if it's a child vampire, a la "Interview..." ?

I agree though. Guys like me are not likely to stress over stuff, but people who haven't experienced chaos & carnage are more likely to freak out.

Re:Stress != Urgency (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35571276)

They'd call in the military if Woody Allen called up about anything.

Wait, that reference might be too old for some of you slashdotters.

They'd call in the military if Kif Kroker [wikipedia.org] called up about anything.

Re:Stress != Urgency (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35571352)

no, no, it also intelligently works out what you are saying and prioritizes the calls on the urgency of the type of emergency it is.

it also works out if you require any particular food and drink, finds a local takeaway or preferably delivery service and orders the food via an automated service

and it can fly and turn invisible at will.

Re:Stress != Urgency (1)

netsharc (195805) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571458)

Perhaps other information can be gathered... "Welcome to 911! Please type in the number of people requiring emergency services, followed by the pound symbol."

What other questions are there? "Please enter how many minutes you estimate the person has left."

"For ambulance, press 1, for fire, press 2. For police, press 3.".

Re:Stress != Urgency (3, Interesting)

Abstrackt (609015) | more than 3 years ago | (#35572034)

You know, that'd be faster than any 911 call I've made recently....

911 op: "911, what's your emergency?"
Me: "A half-ton truck just rear-ended an ammonia trailer, flipped over into the ditch and the occupant is bleeding profusely. I can't remove him from the vehicle. My location is Road 19W on the highway, just east of the exit to (whatever town it was)."
911 op: "Okie, let me just type that in here for a sec... (pause) ...there! So, I'm going to connect you with the local police department."

Cue the introductions, me explaining the whole bloody thing again, giving the location again, followed by giving directions because they don't understand the addressing system that was actually put in place to make it easier for emergency responders to find places in just such a situation.

I miss the gold old days when calling 911 meant you were talking to someone was located in the general area of the city and surrounding roads, not someone in a call center on the other end of the country.

Re:Stress != Urgency (0)

C_amiga_fan (1960858) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571538)

>>>This system would prioritise a 5 year old ringing about a huge splinter, over a military veteran reporting a 3 car pileup

Well this is what happens when your government runs-out of money, doesn't want to spend any Euros to upgrade the 911 system to handle more calls (and more operators), so instead they start rationing the medical care by using a computer that "screens out" people.

I predict in another year or two we'll start hearing stories about Patients that died at home because the 911 Computer decided they were "not stressed enough" and left them without care.

Stress=Priority (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35571090)

So, panic means better service and calm rationality means you'll be ignored?

Re:Stress=Priority (1)

AlienIntelligence (1184493) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571254)

So, panic means better service and calm rationality means you'll be ignored?

Lol, seriously...

Hmmm, I got an idea, let's bump all the freaked out
people that are screaming and unintelligible to the top
of the queue to take up valuable time that the rational
easy to understand callers could have quickly given
their info.

Perfect! Maybe it's time to move to soviet russia
where 911 calls you!

-AI

Neat Idea (2)

Anrego (830717) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571098)

However, the stress in the callers voice may not indicate the severity of the emergency.

Some people can be calm and collective in very high stress situations, whereas some people freak out when someone has a dizzy spell. Additionally an outside observer may be less stressed, for example someone calling in a 5 car pile up or reporting that someone in their store just collapsed. And then there are children making calls... which probably introduced a whole new level of random.

The article mentions an error rate, but doesn’t really seem to elaborate as to whether that error rate is stress to emergency, or the algorithm’s ability to identify stress. Before deploying something like this, I hope they do some kind of study to determine if stressed voices correlate to actual emergency severity in the majority of cases (which they may have already done, the article isn’t clear).

Re:Neat Idea (1)

realisticradical (969181) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571400)

Clearly 911 should just do triage lists like my bank and phone company do.

I can see it now:

Please Press 1 if your cat is stuck in a tree.

Please Press 2 if you want to report a burglary or robbery that has already happened.

Please Press 3 if you want to report a burglary or robbery that is in progress.

Please Press 4 if you were in or would like to report a car accident.

Please Press 5 if you would like to report a fire.

Please Press 6 if you would like assistance for a heart attack or stroke.

For all other emergencies please stay on the line and a 911 operator will be with you shortly.

...

Due to the extremely high volume of call requests all of our operators are assisting other emergency callers at this time. Please stay on the line and your call will be handled in the order it was received.

Re:Neat Idea (2)

Anrego (830717) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571516)

We've all heard it, but it's probably on my top 5 list of simpsons quotes:

Automated answering system: you have selected "regicide." If you know the name of the king or queen being murdered, press one.

I wonder... (2)

PJ6 (1151747) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571100)

how it will deal with a Scottish accent [youtube.com] .

Pointless (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35571106)

Seriously? What good is this. All this will do is measure how urgently the person *thinks* they need help.

Example 1: Person A loves their cat, it's stuck up a tree. The system registers very high stress in their voice, because this person cares a lot about their cat and is also the kind of person who gets into a hysterical panic over the slightest thing.

Example 2: Person B has witnessed a road traffic accident. They weren't personally involved and don't know any of the people involved, so they aren't especially stressed about it. They phone the emergency services and relay the important information in a calm and reasonable manner.

Which one gets the priority?

Re:Pointless (1)

AlienIntelligence (1184493) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571274)

Seriously? What good is this. All this will do is measure how urgently the person *thinks* they need help.

Example 1: Person A loves their cat, it's stuck up a tree. The system registers very high stress in their voice

Example 2: Person B has witnessed a road traffic accident. They weren't personally involved and don't know any of the people involved, so they aren't especially stressed about it.

Which one gets the priority?

The cat man... damn, didn't you RTFA!

-AI

Re:Pointless (1)

91degrees (207121) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571412)

The road traffic accident. As it would before.

This isn't going to replace anything. It's simply going to provide additional information.

So... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35571116)

...if I say in a completely calm and steady voice "my wife is bleeding out of her eyes and has turned blue", this sytem will not treat the call as urgent?

Huh.

Re:So... (1)

jesseck (942036) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571286)

That's your alibi, then- "Your Honor, I didn't murder my wife. She slipped and fell, and I called 9-1-1. It's not my fault that she bled out because the system said it was not an emergency".

Re:So... (1)

AlienIntelligence (1184493) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571304)

...if I say in a completely calm and steady voice "my wife is bleeding out of her eyes and has turned blue", this sytem will not treat the call as urgent?

Huh.

Lol... the bleeding out of the eyes would probably cause a slight
increase in stress in my voice... esp considering that's the premise
of a lot of "bad" virus movies. Or did I mean "bad virus" movies?

-AI

It's Nuts (2)

1s44c (552956) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571156)

Caller stress doesn't correlate well with how important the call is. It correlates with how closely involved the caller is in the incident.

Besides a lot of people will panic like crazy at, say, a small car accident where no-one was hurt.

Re:It's Nuts (1)

Ksevio (865461) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571418)

Exactly. If someone's house in on fire, they're going to sound a lot more stressed than my calling it in as I'm driving through the neighborhood . Same emergency though.

As Evolution is to religion (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35571164)

this would only be a theory and nothing more.

Fantastic (1)

dakkon1024 (691790) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571170)

So a sociopath trying to save a life is going to the bottom of the list. Yea, this is an awful idea.

Re:Fantastic (1)

gstoddart (321705) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571598)

So a sociopath trying to save a life is going to the bottom of the list. Yea, this is an awful idea.

Do sociopaths do that very often?

I mean, if you lack "a sense of moral responsibility or social conscience [reference.com] ", are you really calling 911 to save lives?

I agree this sounds like a potentially bad idea ... just not sure if your example is one of the likely corner cases.

Horrible Idea! (2)

Lythrdskynrd (1823332) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571200)

This may seem counter intuitive, but it's a horrible idea. This will provide artificial priority for the histrionic personality type.

Re:Horrible Idea! (1)

dakkon1024 (691790) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571346)

lol

911, or 999, or whatever (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35571210)

"112" in most if not all of Europe. Unless you plan to never leave your home town it would be useful to make sure you know the emergency numbers where you're going.

Though still a bit sloppy for self-conciously intarwebz-savvy people to forget the other emergency number with coverage larger than 999. Do slashdot readers, hopelessly provincial merkins that they all are (I know this to be true as every single poster is obviously an accurate representation of the entire readership), hope they can ignore the global interconnectedness that the internet unleashed, or do they prefer to arrogantly not spend it a single thought at all?

Sure, that's a troll. But the point it raises isn't entirely invalid, now is it?

112 pretty close (certainly closest) to worldwide (1)

sznupi (719324) | more than 3 years ago | (#35572152)

Apart from the status of "national emergency number" in quite a few places, 112 works anywhere in the world when using a GSM-family handset (= vast majority of mobile phones; or simply "...of phones" for some time now)

babys; we are equipped with advanced sensory dna (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35571222)

so whose idea is it to allow more & more of us to be starved, drowned, slaughtered etc.., each day now? this is not going to end well for any of us. (some of us will?) see you at the play-dates etc.

what about media based FEAR/DEATH mongering (Score:mynutswon; not here you don't)
by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 19, @09:28AM
some of us could get along without that too. fear generation(al) is much
more disastrous than disasters whether/weather natural, or MANufactured.
it (fear) does generate even more FEAR, mammon, the need for EVEN MORE
'defense' (from ourselves/unidentifiable 'enemies'?) when stuff blows up,
goes under water etc.., so that's good?

everyone is ?afraid? to discuss (0 mention anywhere) all of us disarming
ourselves? curious? not really. considering....

fortunately we have an allknowingcaretakingexpandingoverseer.biz.gov to
help us sort out our unfoundead fears?

babys rule. the more the better. they know stuff too. that's so simple. so
simple as to extract the pee out of the nazi mutant eugenatics 'math',
which quite possibly helps the rulers' gregorian 'calender' (took almost 6
months to author), abstracting (an attempt) our time itself? is that whack
or what? ascared? how would we know (anything else?)?

so, we'll then expect to see you at any one of the million babys+
play-dates, conscience arisings, georgia stone editing(s), & a host of
other life promoting/loving events. guaranteed to activate all of our
sense(s) at once. perhaps you have seen our list of pure intentions for
you /us, beginning with disarmament?

just kidding? not at all

GeorgiaStoneMasons, 'chosen ones', in cahoots? (Score:0)
by Anonymous Coward on Friday March 18, @09:12AM (#35528686)
the GSM get their tiny (ie; selfish, stingy, eugenatic, fake math) .5
billion remaining population, & the money/weapons/vaccine/deception/fake
'weather' alchemist/genetically altered nazi mutant goon exchangers, get
us? yikes

the 'fog' is lifting? more chariots will be needed?

ALL (uninfactdead) MOMMYS......

the georgia stone remains uneditable? gad zooks. are there no chisels?

previous math discardead; 1+1 extrapolated (Score:-1)
by Anonymous Coward on Monday March 14, @10:59PM (#35487476)
deepends on how you interpret it. georgia stone freemason 'math'; the
variables & totals are objective oriented; oranges: 1+1= not enough,
somebody's gotta die. people; 1+1=2, until you get to .5 billion, then
1+1=2 too many, or, unless, & this is what always happens, they breed
uncontrolled, naturally (like monkeys), then, 1+1=could easily result in
millions of non-approved, hoardsplitting spawn. see the dilemma? can
'math', or man'kind' stand even one more League of Smelly Infants being
born?

there are alternative equations being proffered. the deities (god, allah,
yahweh, buddha, & all their supporting castes) state in their manuals that
we needn't trouble ourselves with thinning the population, or being so
afraid as to need to hoard stuff/steal everything. chosen people? chosen
for what? to live instead of us? in the case of life, more is always
better. unassailable perfect math. see you at the play-dates, georgia
stone editing(s) etc... babys rule.

exploding babys; corepirate nazis to be caged (Score:-1)
by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 13, @10:50PM (#35476142)
there are plans to put them, (the genetically, surgically & chemically
altered coreprate nazi mutant fear/death mongerers (aka47; eugenatics,
weapons peddlers, kings/minions, adrians, freemasons etc...)) on display
in glass cages, around the world, so that we can remember not to forget...
again, what can happen, based on greed/fear/ego stoking deception.

viewing/feeding will be rationed based on how many more of the creators'
innocents are damaged, or have to be brought home (& they DO have another
one) prematurely.

Reply to This
excess could wreck another planet in 400 years?
black hole builders? ungrateful? misinformed. what?this planet was relatively

Second thought (1)

BitterKraut (820348) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571226)

Some contributors have already pointed out that a high stress level on the caller's side need not necessarily indicate an increased urgency of the situation. But there are scenarios where automated stress level detection may be helpful: Think of some catastrophic event with very many callers. If there's not enough staff at hand to serve all the callers, it may be helpful to select those first who are able to report calmly.

Seems a ridiculous approach... (1)

Assmasher (456699) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571244)

...since while my wife is fairly hysterical and stressed when an emergency occurs, I actually tend to get calmer (since freaking out doesn't help anyone.) Being level headed means my call would get automatically triaged as less important?

Stress (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35571248)

My ex gf was phobic, when she would see a mouse or rat she would freak out and behave irrationally. Anyone seeing her have an episode might think she's in genuine danger.

Does this mean she'll be first in the queue before someone that really needs emergency services?

Heck, some people stress out about World Of Wankers.

wrong approach (1)

eli867 (300724) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571250)

Seems like you'd be much better off promoting non-emergency hotlines like the 311 in many US cities.

"the" 311? (1)

jabberw0k (62554) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571452)

Never heard of 311, and why would it be "the" 311 -- the 311 _what_? Is that Losangeles-speak like "the" Orange County or "the" Interstate Highway 5? (Apparently that is short for "the Interstate Highway 5 limited access highway" -- well they say "freeway" which just means limited access highway -- talk about redundancy)... stamp out useless "the"s! ... anyhow 311 sounds like it's more for finding out when trash pickups are than for reporting not-quite-emergency situations: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/3-1-1 [wikipedia.org]

Great for hysterics (2)

EmperorOfCanada (1332175) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571266)

I have seen people get hysterical over a fender bender screaming "Oh my baby!" and I have seen people laughing while trying to control a broken airplane. Just hire dispatchers with a bit of common sense.
This is like the TSA always trying to find a machine to do the job that a human could do way better if they were allowed to do it with common sense.

Great idea...? (2)

aaaaaaargh! (1150173) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571280)

So people that remain calm and do not panick during an emergency will get lower priority and have to wait, whereas people that totally freak out and start to cry because the cat doesn't come down from the tree will get help immediately.

Should emergency dispatch centers be staffed by enough people that are adequately paid instead?

So forget all about not panicking in emergencies. (1)

John Hasler (414242) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571300)

Just dial 911 and scream HELP!!!!1!. Be sure and put lots of stress in your voice. Calmly report the location and nature of the emergency? No. Just shriek.

Relative Stress (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35571310)

Surely this system is flawed due to the fact that stress is relative in comparison to the person that is ringing up?
A 70 year old woman would find two men leaning against her wall much more stressing than a 21 year old.

A better idea (1)

Combatso (1793216) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571322)

Why don't they better train the agents taking the calls.. this reads to me like a scene in Idiocracy where the guy goes to the hospital and the triage nurse has a big panel with icons representing different ailments.. Maybe if the agent knew that 'gun-shots+big pools of blood' > 'I didnt get my chicken nuggets' they wouldnt have this problem.

Inverse correlation would be better (1)

petes_PoV (912422) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571358)

First responders and others trained in giving assistance in emergency (medical) situations are often trained not to treat first the people who are crying out loudest for help - but to consider the quiet, comatose ones as being more seriously in aid of help. Maybe this system would be better used to prioritise the cool, calm, considered callers rather than the hyperactive, hysterical ones.

Evolution in action (1)

island_earth (468577) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571388)

If people who can't sound calm are more likely to get emergency help. then over the generations they'll be more likely to survive emergencies to go on and reproduce, while the relaxed-sounding people will bleed to death in the streets. In a few generations, the overall stress level of the human race will be artificially boosted until we all sound like Gilbert Gottfried.

Calm Murder (1)

Stenchwarrior (1335051) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571404)

What if I shot my wife and calmly called 911...would they put me at the back of the queue, thus putting her life at risk?

I know, I know.. not likely; I'd be ecstatic and they'd misinterpret that for stress.

How about an even better idea (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35571446)

Collect taxes so municipalities can actually afford to staff their 911 call centers. What's that you say? Rich people have their own personal doctor in-house and shouldn't have to pay just so those sniveling poor people can call the cops? How sad.

New Number (4, Funny)

NinjaPablo (246765) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571464)

Haven't you heard? Emergency services has a new number. It's 0118-999-881-999-119-7253.

Re:New Number (1)

erroneus (253617) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571584)

Ahhh! Yo beat me to it!!

0118 999 881 999 119 725 3

The three is best with a slight pause :)

we need to punish non-emergency 911 calls hard (1)

circletimessquare (444983) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571478)

if someone calls 911 because they want help figuring out their taxes or wants to complain about the neighbors dog pooping on their lawn, they need to be fined, with jail time for those who can't seem to get the message. and jail time for those who purposefully prank 911. an exemption for toddlers who call 911, and elderly who might be confused, is in order, of course

but otherwise nonemergency concerns are wasting operator's time and putting people with genuine time-critical needs in mortal danger

Re:we need to punish non-emergency 911 calls hard (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35571700)

Punish blatant non-emergency sure.

However I don't want reasonable non-emergencies punished. Things like an apparent stroke, heart attack, medication/allergic reaction can come on a bit odd, and I wouldn't want people to be scared to call for help.

As far as stress, some people seem to hold off the stress reaction until the immediate crisis is over, I'd hate to see that behaviour result in the call being deprioritized.

But as far as people calling for beer, or weather reports, or their drug dealer ripped them off, lock those guys up.

Re:we need to punish non-emergency 911 calls hard (1)

dingen (958134) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571728)

Isn't that the case already then? Here in the Netherlands, it's a criminal offense to call the emergency line without proper cause. This is what the government [rijksoverheid.nl] says about it:

Misbruik 112 is strafbaar

Het bellen van 112 als het niet om een noodgeval gaat, is strafbaar. Er kunnen dan slachtoffers vallen omdat personen met een echte noodmelding geen verbinding kunnen krijgen met de alarmcentrale. De politie doet er in het geval van een nepbeller alles aan om zijn identiteit op te sporen en hem aansprakelijk te stellen voor de gemaakte kosten. Daarnaast kan hij een boete of zelfs een gevangenisstraf krijgen. Ook wanneer er anoniem wordt gebeld, is het nummer te zien. Belt iemand met een mobiele telefoon, dan is het nummer ook te achterhalen. Dit kan zelfs als er geen simkaart in de mobiele telefoon zit.

Roughly translated, this says abuse of the emergency number is an offense and the police will do anything in its power to track the abuser. When caught, the abuser is liable for the expenses made by his fake emergency call. On top of that, fines and imprisonment are possibilities. Calling the emergency line is never anonymous, even when caller ID is disabled or no SIM is installed.

Re:we need to punish non-emergency 911 calls hard (1)

circletimessquare (444983) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571918)

here's a fake 911 call story that will blow your mind: cops faking a 911 call, so they would be dispatched near where they knew a drunken woman was they wanted to rape:

http://gothamist.com/2009/05/03/cops_made_fake_911_call_to_return_t.php [gothamist.com]

not really new (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35571494)

Insurance companies have been using this for years to detect fraudulent calls.

This system will kill people (1)

gweihir (88907) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571546)

There is no replacement for an experiences operator that makes an informed decision about the level of urgency. This system may even make matters worse. It is just another exceedingly stupid attempt to replace human intelligence and experience with something cheaper but vastly inferior.

Re:This system will kill people (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35571786)

Totally agreed. I can't find the link, but I read a story about an operator who refused to send an ambulance to someone dying of a heart attack because the caller didn't sound stressed enough. The caller was a nurse keeping her cool, and the patient subsequently died.

Very Dutch indeed! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35571550)

Dear Customer,

thanks for calling the emergency service. As you certainly know, the Dutch emergency service is overloaded with calls.

Therefore, you've been put onto a waiting list. A lottery will be used to determine next person being served. Don't worry, you don't need to do anything, we already entered your name into the lottery system. You just have to wait until served.

Thanks for your patience, we all work together for a better system!

Thank goodness for this system. (1)

Aldenissin (976329) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571560)

I mean, stress can be enhanced by pain. So, I am good if I say, stub my toe [upi.com] . But what if I am in schock? I guess I won't get the help I need.

From a dispatcher: this is dumb (2)

rbanzai (596355) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571720)

I don't understand this article at all because emergency dispatching is not prioritized based on the caller's choice of priority. I could have ten calls at once all insisting they are the top priority and that information would be irrelevant. The nature of the emergency is what's important, not how badly the caller wants assistance.

I dispatched during the L.A. riots and believe me every caller wanted someone to help them RIGHT NOW and I don't blame them. But calls for people being beaten got priority over property crime calls. I question the thought process behind this article that dispatchers do not or cannot already properly prioritize calls.

Hyphens? (1)

trevc (1471197) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571736)

Why are there hyphens in the number? Where is that key on my phone?

I usually stay calm. Do i put lifes at risk? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35571792)

Those few times when i had to call 112 (911 in EU) i remained as calm as usual .. now it sounds as if this is a disadvantage?!
The mere possibility of the thought to speculate about it hadn't even crossed my mind.

Voice analyzers are commonplace in call centers. (1)

Anonymous Psychopath (18031) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571796)

There have been systems in place and commercially available that measure the stress level of a callers voice for some time. They are typically used to alert a supervisor if a caller (or agent) is becoming irate, giving them a chance to coach the agent or step in and address the problem.

If you have a problem with this, say "no" when they advise you that the call is recorded for quality purposes. The law varies from state to state but in many cases they cannot record without your consent.

Re:Voice analyzers are commonplace in call centers (1)

_Shad0w_ (127912) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571972)

With a lot of the call centres I've experienced that would mean never talking to anyone, because that message is usually an automated one. Your only option would be to hang up.

Crank calls (1)

Stormthirst (66538) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571914)

I wonder how well this system will cope with detecting crank calls. The emergency services in the UK get them all the time. Will this system help by calling the cops to the location where the crank call was made from?

People react differently (1)

_Shad0w_ (127912) | more than 3 years ago | (#35571938)

Given there was a incident recently in the UK where a woman died because the call she made to 999 wasn't panicked, so they flagged her as low priority...

I mean seriously, I'm a very nervous person and I don't like talking to people on the phone. Just speaking to 999 would make me sound panicked.

Great idea. (1)

RichiH (749257) | more than 3 years ago | (#35572064)

Let's not dwell on the fact that it should be, quite literally, impossible to overwhelm emergency services (hint: If you fill up capacity, YOU! NEED! MORE!).

Let's just rest assured that the most hysteric people will go through while the people who manage to remain calm will wait forever.

But that does not matter as this is a non-fix to the symptoms, not a fix to the actual root cause.

That's the sound... (1)

slave_to_coffee (472193) | more than 3 years ago | (#35572110)

of the emergency call center operators job getting worse. Now *everyone* has an incentive to freak out even if they're not missing a limb or watching a loved-one choking on a hot dog.

universal emergency number on GSM networks (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35572276)

is 112.

This is dumb. (1)

wcrowe (94389) | more than 3 years ago | (#35572290)

One person is liable to be more stressed about their cat being stuck in a tree than another who is reporting an injury accident.

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