AI tool translates what your baby’s cries mean

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4 New parents guess what A new AI tool can tell you what your babys cries mean


If you’re a parent, then this quiet adult cry for help into the abyss is all too familiar in those first few months of parenthood.

“I just wish I knew what my baby wanted!”

Though babies tend to cry when they need a diaper change, food, or sleep, it’s not that straightforward. Any parent knows that even when you go through the checklist and address all of these, your baby could very well still be crying.

Now what? Do they want to be held? Do they want a pacifier? Are they in pain or uncomfortable? Is the room too cold? It’s hard to know. And, sometimes, if you’re guessing as to why they are crying, you may accidentally stir them when all they wanted was to fall asleep.

Much of it is a guessing game, no matter how many baby books you read. But, what if you could take the guessing part out? What if you could know what your baby was trying to say? What would it do for your sleep (and your sanity?) in those first few months of welcoming a baby into the world?

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Well, now you can with Capella, which promises to be “Your partner in your parenting journey.” Their new app is hoping to “alleviate the two biggest challenges of new parenthood: lack of sleep and worry over your baby’s [well-being].” Intrigued? Yeah, so are we.

WHAT IS ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE (AI)?

Now, you can analyze your baby’s cries with a new AI tool

Capella is a new AI tool that helps parents better understand their baby’s needs by analyzing their cries and what they mean. With this information, parents can better determine whether or not they should — for instance — go into the room and check in on them, get the bottle heated up or prepared to nurse, or let them try to settle on their own. Having this information can go a long way if you’re in the midst of the newborn phase.

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How does the app work?

If you’re thinking, “Wow, I need this NOW,” we don’t blame you. But, if you’re equally baffled at how it all works, here’s the low-down according to Capella’s site:

Download the app on two smartphones: One phone is placed in the baby’s room and the other stays with you. You connect them both with a tap, and then they act as baby monitors.

Let Capella monitor your baby’s sounds: The app’s advanced AI listens to your baby’s sounds/cries and interprets what they mean.

Get alerts with actionable insights: Lastly — and, the reason you’re all here — is to find out why your baby is crying. If the baby cries, you’ll get an instant notification, and the app will tell you that your baby is hungry, tired, uncomfortable, in pain, etc., all by analyzing those cries. This means Capella takes it one step further than regular ordinary monitors, which only tell you that your baby is crying, but not why.

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Of course, the app isn’t able to tell you exactly what to do to make your baby comfortable; this is where human intuition trumps technology. Luckily, Capella also has a community of parents, which can be a great resource to help figure out what to do then after the app tells you why your baby is having a particular cry about something.

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But, how does the AI tool actually work?

Good question. After all, an app that can translate a baby’s cries must have some magical superpower, right? Well, not quite. According to an interview with Capella’s CEO, Apolline Deroche, the company partners with hospitals to record the baby’s cries that are used to train the AI. Then, with the support of doctors who have years of experience understanding these cries, they can match the crying sounds to what we, as adults, understand them to mean.

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What else can the app do?

The app also allows you to track your baby’s sleep, feeding and diaper changes, too. Before Capella, parents would have to use a baby monitor and another tracking app to keep tabs on their babies and have a better understanding of their needs overall. Unfortunately, the mental fatigue of having to keep track of more and more apps and devices sometimes defeats the purpose for tired parents.

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Mom holding her child (Kurt “CyberGuy” Knutsson)

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What parents need to know about technology

Capella’s CEO says that this technology should work anywhere in the world, as a baby’s cries generally mean the same regardless of the language spoken at home. However, this may not necessarily be the case and is just one of the many concerns regarding this technology. Additionally, it’s not foolproof. There’s still a lot of mystery to babies, and there is still a long way to go with technology, too. Not to mention, usually, after a few months, babies’ needs change, as do their cries. At the same time, parents tend to get a better hang of what their baby wants.

Additionally, an app can only go so far. AI cannot replace a human. It cannot replace what we’ve biologically been able to do with and for our newborns for hundreds of thousands of years. So, it must be used only as a tool and not as a replacement. And, if there are serious concerns about your baby’s crying that you don’t understand, always talk to your pediatrician, as it could be something neither Capella nor a parent can decipher.

All this considered, the idea is that Capella — and other AI apps in the baby industry — can give new parents even a little bit of relief. Whether it’s a hands-free stroller, monitoring your baby’s breathing with a special sock, or understanding what your baby is trying to tell you, it doesn’t hurt to have some help from the village — even if that village is a bunch of robots.

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Where can I try the app?

Right now, Capella is available to download at the App Store. The Android app will launch soon, though; you can sign up for the waitlist here.

Kurt’s key takeaways

Capella is just one of the many apps hitting the market that are utilizing AI technology and are being designed to help make life a little easier for their target audience. For parents who are finding out just how to get through that exhausting newborn phase, Capella may be part of the answer. But, only a part. We still have a long way to go before this technology gets anywhere close to how good a parent is at detecting the meaning of a baby’s cries. So, maybe we shouldn’t rely on this too much just yet. We’ll have to see.

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What are your thoughts on using an AI tool to interpret your baby’s cries? Do you think it’s a good thing, or are we relying too much on technology to raise our kids? Let us know by writing us at Cyberguy.com/Contact.

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