The Situation

Across many careers, people face alternating periods of high and low attention and cognitive workload, which can result in impaired cognitive functioning and can be detrimental to job performance. For example, some professionals (e.g., firefighters, emergency medical personnel, doctors and nurses working in an emergency room, pilots) experience long periods of low workload (boredom), followed by sudden, high-tempo operations where they may need to respond to an emergency and perform at peak levels. Conversely, other professionals (e.g., air traffic controllers, financial investors, analysts in many fields) experience long periods of high workload and multitasking, and are constantly on the verge of a sudden disruption that could lead to mistakes. An unobtrusive system to measure, assess, and predict cognitive workload could warn individuals, their teammates, or their supervisors when steps should be taken to augment cognitive readiness.

The Charles River Analytics Solution

Scientists and software engineers at Charles River Analytics developed Sherlock™ as an open and extensible software and hardware platform that enables users to rapidly prototype applications that collect, analyze, visualize, and reason about human physiological, neurological, and behavioral states. Our Sherlock platform enables rapid integration of custom or commercially available off-the-shelf (COTS) hardware components (e.g., sensors, data transmitters, data servers) using an open data exchange layer that requires minimal development to meet operational needs.

The Benefit

Sherlock includes components for data transmission and storage, including a multicast message queue that supports software components written in multiple languages and on multiple platforms, and a HIPAA-compliant database server. Sherlock solutions have been deployed to mobile devices, to web browsers, and as client-side applications for personal computers. The platform also supports rapid prototyping of user interface components so users can intuitively create custom data processing models and present acquired and processed data in a format that fosters end-user trust and understanding. The Sherlock platform provides software solutions for advanced modeling and analytic techniques built on a solid foundation of Charles River Analytics products, such as AgentWorks™ for model composition, BNet® for probabilistic reasoning, and Connect™ for network analysis and visualization. These products have been developed and hardened for deployment in systems that have transitioned to Government and commercial products, and are in use in a range of projects for multiple customers.

Sherlock has been successfully incorporated in several efforts at Charles River, including:

Sherlock has powered many of our efforts, including the CAPT PICARD system for NASA