State-of-the-art machine-learning algorithms demonstrate a link between personality and eye movements, stated study conducted by University of South Australia in partnership with the University of Stuttgart, Flinders University and the Max Planck Institute for Informatics in Germany.
Researchers tracked the eye movements of 42 participants as they undertook everyday tasks around a university campus, and subsequently assessed their personality traits using well-established questionnaires.
‘Eyes may be an indicator of your personality type, simply by the way they move.’
UniSA's Dr Tobias Loetscher says the study provides new links between previously under-investigated eye movements and personality traits and delivers important insights for emerging fields of social signal processing and social robotics.
"There's certainly the potential for these findings to improve human-machine interactions," Dr Loetscher says.
"People are always looking for improved, personalised services. However, today's robots and computers are not socially aware, so they cannot adapt to non-verbal cues.
"This research provides opportunities to develop robots and computers so that they can become more natural, and better at interpreting human social signals."
Dr Loetscher says the findings also provide an important bridge between tightly controlled laboratory studies and the study of natural eye movements in real-world environments.
"This research has tracked and measured the visual behaviour of people going about their everyday tasks, providing more natural responses than if they were in a lab.
"And thanks to our machine-learning approach, we not only validate the role of personality in explaining eye movement in everyday life, but also reveal new eye movement characteristics as predictors of personality traits."