The Mini-VREM platform is composed of a traditional mannequin for physical interaction and a self-learning software guided by Kinect Sensor. The software will automatically reconstruct the trainee’s hand position and posture while performing chest compressions. It is a combination of practicing CPR on a mannequin and using a computer based simulation with Kinect. The Kinect sensor is placed in front of the candidate, while a personal computer runs the software application and provides visual and audio feedback. The developed application is dedicated to self-directed CPR training, using a dashboard that includes a feedback module. This module constantly guides the CPR performance training in relation to the quality of chest compression. The application was developed using the OpenNI, OpenCV and Windows Forms libraries, and it can be used on any commercial PC running any version of the Microsoft Windows operating system. Here’s more details from the project developers:

“We built a prototype that includes a Kinect Sensor and specifically developed software to guide training in order to improve the quality of chest compressions (CC). We tested it in a sample of 80 users to evaluate the effect of Mini-VREM platform on CC performance and its acceptance. The Mini-VREM (Mini-Virtual Reality Enhanced Mannequin) system was developed between July and September 2011 at the PERCRO laboratory of Scuola Sant’Anna, Pisa. It is based on a commercially available mannequin connected to a Microsoft Kinect motion sensing device; data are acquired and processed using software that was specifically developed by the authors to provide on-line feedback according to the performance of chest compression manoeuvres.”

It’s an interesting use of the Kinect, one that could help teach people proper life-saving techniques and could make learning them easier and perhaps more fun (depending on how they choose to present the learning tool portion). Be sure to check out the video to see the hack in action!