University of Glasgow boffins think sound and video with a touch screen lets them enjoy the sounds of rain, music, traffic noise, worm videos or even underwater scenes
Monkeys could soon ape humans using their own streaming services.
The scientists set up a computer system that provided sound and video with a touch screen so they could choose between the two.
The aim is to stimulate them in a way similar to the interaction in nature, according to experts from the University of Glasgow.
Dr Ilyena Hirskyj-Douglas, from the School of Computing Science, said: “We have previously explored how they interact with video content and audio content, but this is the first time we have given the option to choose between both.
“Our results raise a number of questions that deserve further study to help us build effective interactive enrichment systems.”
Researchers looked at three white-faced saki monkeys at Korkeasaari Zoo in Helsinki, Finland.
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Roosa Piitulainen / Aalto University)
A small computer was placed in a wooden and plastic tunnel placed inside their enclosure.
The monkeys had the chance to enjoy the sounds of rain, music, traffic noises, videos of worms, underwater scenes, or abstract shapes and colors.
They would trigger video or sound by passing through infrared beams and could listen or watch for as long as they chose to stay.
The device recorded what they were watching and listening to and found that the saki monkeys’ interactions were usually short, lasting only a few seconds.
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Dr Hirskyj-Douglas added: “We have previously explored how they interact with video content and audio content, but this is the first time we have given the option to choose between the two.”
The researchers found that the monkeys reacted more to visual stimuli than to sound stimuli.
In 2007, the Mirror told how a grief-stricken gorilla called Nico coped with the death of his lifelong companion Samba while watching television.
Ian Turner, then caretaker at Longleat Safari Park, Wilts, said: “Planet of the Apes really drives it forward too.”