14:07 19 April 2017
Waiting has always been a part of our daily lives and throughout the day, we are likely to waste precious minutes waiting for a lift, waiting in line at the grocery store, or even waiting for our orders to be served at restaurants.
Researchers from MIT’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory have developed a series of tools called WaitSuite to convert your idle moments into learning opportunities.
On Monday, the team released WaitChatter, their first tool in the suite and is a Chrome extension for GChat that "delights you with interactive vocabulary exercises while you're waiting for your conversation partner to respond." The tool, which currently teaches basic vocabulary in Spanish and French, could one day support other languages, researchers have confirmed.
In a statement, MIT PhD student Carrie Cai, who leads the project, said: "With standalone apps, it can be inconvenient to have to separately open them up to do a learning task. WaitSuite is embedded directly into your existing tasks, so that you can easily learn without leaving what you were already doing."
The team plans to release their other tools in the coming months including WiFiLearner, which gives you learning prompts when you’re waiting for the lift.