These programs work pretty well: Children using an autotutor for math progress much faster than those who get just a regular textbook or are stuck in a crowded classroom with no one-on-one instruction.
There’s one snag, though: Autotutors can’t tell when a student is bored or frustrated. A regular teacher can spot this instantly and intervene. So Woolf decided to tackle the problem by designing a computer that senses emotion.
(Link: Clive Thompson on Gadgets That Know How We Feel | Magazine)