The word "emotion" dates back to 1579, when it was adapted from the French word , which means "to stir up". The term emotion was introduced into academic discussion as a catch-all term to , and . According to one dictionary, the earliest precursors of the word likely dates back to the very origins of language. The modern word emotion is heterogeneous In some uses of the word, emotions are intense feelings that are directed at someone or something. On the other hand, emotion can be used to refer to states that are mild (as in annoyed or content) and to states that are not directed at anything (as in anxiety and depression). One line of research thus looks at the meaning of the word emotion in everyday language and this usage is rather different from that in academic discourse. Another line of research asks about languages other than English, and one interesting finding is that many languages have a similar but not identical term
In , the social science that studies the production, distribution, and consumption of goods and services, emotions are analyzed in some sub-fields of microeconomics, in order to assess the role of emotions on purchase decision-making and risk perception. In , a social science approach to the study of crime, scholars often draw on behavioral sciences, sociology, and psychology; emotions are examined in criminology issues such as theory and studies of "toughness," aggressive behavior, and hooliganism. In , which underpins civil obedience, politics, economics and society, evidence about people's emotions is often raised in claims for compensation and in prosecutions against alleged lawbreakers (as evidence of the defendant's state of mind during trials, sentencing, and parole hearings). In , emotions are examined in a number of sub-fields, such as the analysis of voter decision-making.
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In the 2000s, research in computer science, engineering, psychology and neuroscience has been aimed at developing devices that recognize human display and model emotions. In computer science, is a branch of the study and development of that deals with the design of systems and devices that can recognize, interpret, and process human emotions. It is an interdisciplinary field spanning , , and . While the origins of the field may be traced as far back as to early philosophical enquiries into , the more modern branch of computer science originated with 's 1995 paper on affective computing. Detecting emotional information begins with passive which capture data about the user's physical state or behavior without interpreting the input. The data gathered is analogous to the cues humans use to perceive emotions in others. Another area within affective computing is the design of computational devices proposed to exhibit either innate emotional capabilities or that are capable of convincingly simulating emotions. Emotional speech processing recognizes the user's emotional state by analyzing speech patterns. The detection and processing of facial expression or body gestures is achieved through detectors and sensors. The pioneer F-M 2.0 (F-M FACS 2.0) was created in 2017 by Dr. Freitas-Magalhães, and presents about 2,000 segments in 4K, using 3D technology and automatic and real-time recognition.