Guest lecture: Benoît Bardy

Benoît Bardy held a very interesting guest lecture on the topic “Perception-Action Dynamics Underlying Gesture Classification” yesterday.

An interesting opening remark was on terminology. He commented that in his field (kinesiology) they never use the term gesture at all, while in the ConGAS community noone seems to talk about movement. He suggested the following definitions for some key terms:

  • Gesture: non-verbal communication, body language, sign, expressive movements
  • Movement: change in position/orientation
  • Action: goal-directed movement
  • Skill: capacity to reach a goal with efficient performance

I have tried to understand if there is a difference between movement and motion, but he couldn’t enlighten me there. Some native English speakers say there is a difference, while others claim they denote the same thing. It also seems like some research communities only use motion (e.g. motion capture), while others only use movement (e.g. human movement science).

Benoît also showed the brilliant BioMotionLab demo allowing to control point light displays of a person with changing parameters (gender, weight, anxiety and emotion).

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Alexander Refsum Jensenius is a music researcher and research musician living in Oslo, Norway.

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