Ernesto Ramirez

Ernesto Ramirez
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What We Are Reading

After a few weeks of we’re back for another round of What We’re Reading. As you may know, we just wrapped on amazing three day conference and expo in San Francisco. Thank you to all that came, participated, and helped make QS15 such a wonderful experience!

Couldn’t make it to QS15? You’re in luck! We just announced our fourth Quantified Self Europe Conference. Join us in Amsterdam for an intimate and engaging event. You don’t want to miss it! Early bird tickets are on sale now.

Now, on with the show!

QS15 Reactions

We’ve started to see a few great blog posts and articles describing the experience of attending the QS15 Conference and Expo. For the next few weeks we’ll be highlight a few here.

Quantified Self ’15 Day 1 Recap by Tim Hanrahan
Quantified Self Expo, Part 1 by Karl Etzel.
What you can learn from the 2015 Quantified-Self Conference by Guillaume Tourneur
What I learned at Quantified Self 2015 by Richard Sprague

Articles

Is Direct Access to Lab Results Helpful or Harmful? by Patricia Salber. Patricia updates a post, first written in 2011, about the pros and cons associated with having direct access to medical testing and lab results.

Jaguar wants to monitor its drivers’ brainwaves, heart rate, and breathing by Jacob Kastrenakes. Sounds a bit far-fetched, and we may never see this research project in our cars, but I was intrigued by this:

But Jaguar says that it should be able to monitor for brainwaves through sensors embedded in the steering wheel. It’s apparently looking into adapting tech that’s already used by NASA to monitor pilots’ concentration.

Sounds interesting, but I’m also left I’m also left wondering if it will be worth measuring my concentration when the cars of the future will be driving themselves!

Google Reveals Health-Tracking Wristband by Caroline Chen and Brian Womack. Interesting to see that Google X is getting into the wearables game. Anyone know the difference between this device and other similar tools like Basis?

Biggest winner of the Finals? Rest! by Tom Haberstroh. What helped the Golden State Warriors have one of the best seasons in NBA history and capture the championship? Quantified Self of course!

They Warriors are as nerdy as it gets. As clients of wearable technology provider Catapult Sports, they monitor their players’ workloads in practice with GPS monitors and analyze the data with acute attention to maximizing performance while minimizing injury risk.

Show&Tell
Sorry_RobinW
Sorry by Robin Weis. A fascinating and beautifully articulated exploration into apologies between Robin and her parter. (Note: This was first posted by Robin on our Quantified Self Facebook Group. Join us forfor some great conversation!)

TimeTracking_MelanieP
How Tracking What I Do Every Day Helped Me Find Better Work-Life Balance by Melanie Pinola.

Most importantly, time tracking has helped me think more clearly about how I spend my time. I can see at a glance where I’m spending too much time in one area and not enough in others and also find patterns in my behavior.

Visualizations

TimeSleep
Find Out How Much Less Sleep You’re Getting Than Everyone Else by Dave Johnson and Alexander Ho. Time and Withings paired up to create some great interactive visualizations on sleep.

RyanB_appswitch
Visualizing “Productivity” with Elasticsearch, Logstash and D3 by Ryan Brink. Ryan wanted to get “look into my life at the keyboard” so he decided to gather some data and use D3 to visualize it. Click for the graphs, stay for the in-depth how-to explanation.

JawboneMood
What Makes People Happy? We Have the Data. by Sukrit Mohan. Jawbone takes a peak into their data to see what impacts mood. Above we see “a clear relationship between steps on the previous day and the mood of the user in the morning: better moods correlate with more steps.”

From the Forum

Food choice motivation experiment – Looking for a few people
Recommendation for Unique HR Monitoring Situation
Looking for the Zeo app for iPhone

QuantifiedSelf.com

QS15: What Happened?
Comparing Apple Watch and Fitbit One for Step Tracking
Announcing the 2015 Quantified Self Europe Conference
Anand Sharma: Aprilzero, Gyroscope, and Me

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Anand Sharma: Aprilzero, Gyroscope, and Me

AprilZero
With all the self-tracking applications, devices, and services out there it can be hard to make sense of all the data you’re collecting. Anand Sharma ran into this situation in 2014 when he started thinking about his data and how he wanted to use it to help him understand himself, optimize what he cared about, and help him tell the story of his life through data. He tackled this problem by creating a personal website called Aprilzero that let him publicly expose his data and insights. After a large influx of positive feedback Anand, along with a few collaborators, has launched Gyroscope, which enables individuals to use his visualization and aggregation system. We were excited to have Anand at our Bay Area meetup group a few months ago, where he told us the story of hw this all came together and what he’s been learning in the process.

To learn more about Anand, and his journey to create Aprilzero and Gyroscope check out his journal.

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Announcing the 2015 Quantified Self Europe Conference

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We are excited to announce that registration is now open for the 2015 Quantified Self Europe Conference. On September 18th and 19th we’re once again filling the beautiful Casa 400 hotel in Amsterdam with talks, discussions, and demos from the global Quantified Self community. If you’re interested in self-tracking, lifelogging, data visualization and art, new technologies of personal science, the policy and politics of  data access, and helping understand and shape the future of the Quantified Self movement, these two days are for you.

As always, we’ll be crafting a “carefully curated un-conference” that is based on the emerging topics from the QS community. When you register, we’ll invite you to tell us something about your own self-tracking practice, and suggest topics for discussion. We’ll be working over the next three months to put together a program that surfaces the most important current questions. We have a limited number of registrations available for €149, so if you plan to be there you want to register right away.

REGISTER FOR QSEU15

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Comparing Apple Watch and Fitbit One for Step Tracking

ApplevFitbit

When the Apple Watch was announced I started waiting with bated breath to see how it could be useful for Quantified Self and self-tracking purposes. Of course this means staying up late and making sure I had one on order as soon as possible. I put in my order shortly after midnight on launch day for a 42mm Space Gray with the black sport band.

On May 19th my Apple Watch arrived, coincidentally just after we wrapped on our first Bay Area Apple Watch Users Group meeting (which was fantastic and I highly recommend joining). I set it up and started figuring out how it worked as an activity tracker. I have a keen interest in activity tracking, not just as a self-tracker, but also as a graduate student studying how people use activity tracker data to understand and impact their lives. In that vein, I’ve been a consistent Fitbit user for over four years, transitioning from the original Fitbit to the Ultra, and then to my current Fitbit One. I’m a big fan of the Fitbit and use it as my personal “gold standard” for activity tracking. It’s accurate, consistent, and easy to use. Does that hold true for the Apple Watch? Let’s find out.

What did I do?

I wore my Apple Watch every day, from the moment I woke up to when I went to sleep at night. I set up my charging station on my nightstand, which is also where my Fitbit One spends its nights. I wasn’t thinking about this data analysis when I first started wearing the watch, but looking back over the past month I am confident saying that if I was wearing my Fitbit I was also wearing the watch.

This data analysis includes data from May 20th to June 23rd, or 35 days of data collection. My activities varied as a normal function of my work and life, meaning I didn’t purposefully mix things up or engage in activities just for testing purposes. Many days were sedentary, some days had longer walking periods, and in the 35 days I ran seven times at distances between four and nine miles.

How did I do it?

Exporting the data from both the Fitbit and the Apple Watch is not a trivial task, but thanks to a few pieces of software I was able to access and analyze both data sets.

Apple Watch
The Apple Watch stores the data it collects in Apple’s Health app using Healthkit. A quick glance into the Health app indicates that it is storing minute-level step data from the Apple Watch. Apple built in a data export function for the Health app, but it’s in a proprietary XML format that I’m not super familiar with. Thankfully there is QS Access. Our team at QS Labs created simple app that connects to Apple Health and allows you to export your data in a easy to use .csv file.

To export my data I first made sure that the Apple Watch had the highest priority for the data sources that feed the “steps” data for Apple Health. This is important because all newer iPhones (5s, 6, 6+) also natively create step data and store it in the Health app. I then used QS Access to create a data export for steps. I chose the hourly function as it’s the highest level of granularity the QS Access app currently offers for data export.

Fitbit
Fitbit recently introduced a data export feature. While this is a great step forward for them, and for their millions of users, the export feature is a bit limited. You can only export daily aggregate data and only one month of data is exportable at a time. Since I had access to hourly data from the Apple Watch I wanted to match that granularity.

I turned to my good friend, and past colleague, Aaron Coleman. Aaron runs a unique startup called Fitabase, which was built to help researchers, organizations, and individuals get easy access to activity tracker data. I spun up my account at Fitabase, which has been collecting and storing my Fitbit data for the last few years, chose the date range and downloaded my hourly step data.

I wanted to get right to my core question, “How accurate is the Apple Watch compared to the Fitbit One?” so I imported both data files into Google Spreadsheets, did a bit of data formatting, created a pivot table, then made some simple graphs. The full data set is available here if you want explore more complex statistics or visualizations.

What Did I Learn?

When compared to the Fitbit One, the Apple Watch is fairly accurate for step tracking. What do I mean by fairly accurate? Let’s dive into the data.

Daily Steps

When I explored my daily step totals it appeared that the Apple Watch counts more steps than my Fitbit One, but not that many more. Here’s the data you need to know:

  • Fitbit Total Steps: 308,955
  • Apple Watch Total Steps: 317,971
  • >Difference: 9,016 or 2.91% of the total steps (counted by Fitbit)

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I created a difference category by subtracting Fitbit steps from Apple Watch steps for each day. This allowed me to see how different the data was day over day. The mean difference indicated that Apple Watch counted 258 steps more per day on average. Important to note that the daily difference was highly variable with a standard deviation of 516 steps. Looking at the scatterplot and histogram below you can see a few clear outliers, but what appears to be an otherwise normal(ish) distribution for the difference in step counts.

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Hourly Steps
What about when we look at a higher level of granularity? I also explored the hourly steps data and compared the Fitbit and Apple Watch. On average the Apple Watch counted 11 more steps per hour than the Fitbit One during this period. Again, this was highly variable with a standard deviation of 85 steps, and a range from overcounting by 462 steps to undercounting by 696 steps. I haven’t yet filtered out sleep time (0 steps) so the mean difference per hour in this data set is likely skewed low.

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I also looked into one more question that I though was interesting. Is there a significant difference in daily or hourly step data as a function of the total steps? Or, more simply, when I’m more active does the Apple Watch still stay consistent?

It appears that being more active doesn’t have a significant impact on how accurate the Apple Watch is tracking and counting steps. I created scatterplots for this relationship and added a simple linear trendline. In both cases, the trendline indicated that only a small amount of variability in the difference between the devices was accounted for by the total steps taken.

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So What?

I’m not ready to give up my Fitbit just yet, but I was happy to see that the Apple Watch is an accurate step tracking device. Of course there are caveats to this data set. It’s somewhat small, a little over a month of data, and I didn’t do any “ground truth” testing where I counted my actual steps. However, I feel more confident now that whether I’m walking around my apartment, my nieghborhood, or going on runs, the Apple Watch will accurately reflect those activities.

What’s Next?

Like most other runners who are using the Apple Watch I’m interested to dive into the heart rate data to test it’s accuracy. I’ve already collected a few runs, but will doing a bit more testing to compare to other common heart rate trackers.

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An Interface for Your Life: Compass at QS15

One June 18-20 we’re hosting our QS15 Conference and Expo and we’re delighted that so many great toolmakers will be joining us to show off their devices, apps, and services. We’ve asked our toolmakers to give us a bit more background information about their company and what they’re excited about. If you’d like to meet these innovative companies and the amazing people behind them then make sure to register today!

Compass_Logo_Full-Color

How do you describe Compass?
Compass is the first application agent from the Existence platform, developed as an interface for your life.

Compass works quietly in the background looking at the moments in your day and creating three amazing ways of viewing your time.

We don’t count moments, we make moments count!

What’s the backstory?
Six years ago, Chris Dancy thought there had to be a better way to save all the information about his life.  After consulting, speaking and making media appearances around the globe, he joined Healthways  as SVP, Chief Digital Officer.

How did you get started?
In the fall of 2015, a small group of dedicated people started to map out how the future of the user interface could put humankind back in control of our overly saturated tech lives. Four principles where created that drive our product today: Trustworthiness, Awareness, Safety and Kindness, or “TASK.”  In January 2015, we started coding our way to the future. Our team grew in the spring and we are excited about our first event and public debut at the Quantified Self Conference 2015!

What impact has it had?
After announcing the launch of our Alpha version at SXSW 2015, we were blown away to have over 100 signups in 24 hours.

People shared the types of problems they were trying to solve through their use of Compass. Each user’s submission was a trip with great personal intimacy. Users were looking to “{get} help with understanding my depression,” “ease stresses at work and home,” “learn how to sustain my happy times,” and one user even wanted to “make better use of the limited time I have left on earth”.

What have you heard from users?
Each organization we share Compass with is blown away at the potential of a native client on mobile devices.  We are currently exploring partner models. Our limited Alpha testers have experienced both a lot of delight and a lot of testing fatigue. No system has ever been assembled to combine this much personal information and we are thankful for the ongoing support of our testing communities.

Planet_SunsetWhat makes it different sets it apart?
Having tried hundreds of applications, services, devices and sensors, we feel we are the only platform that is taking what people want to do most, which is live their life, not log data, and combining it with things they love to do, like taking photos, looking at maps and reviewing timelines.

Most importantly, we’re the only application that uses Healthkit, activity, behavior, environment, date, time, and more, to passively create moments in a person’s day. So often data services depend on 100’s of API’s, manual logging or arcane processes. Compass elegantly runs in the background and doesn’t stop working if you decide to go live life.

Finally, we are passionate about privacy and data ownership.  Compass data lives solely on the device and is exportable by the user at any time.

What are you doing next?
Next up we have more testing and some final UI tweaks for our release this fall.  We are prioritizing our device strategy from Android to Apple Watch and hiring great new people!

How do you see it evolving?
So much of what we do today as consumers of technology services has turned humanity into a giant mouse pad for personalization.  We see the power of the Existence platform and application agents, like Compass, to become the fuel for an entire new ecosystem of habits and environments as we replace applications and services.

How can people find out more about you?
Check out our blog or introduce yourself to our team!

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A Computer on Your Finger: OURA at QS15

One June 18-20 we’re hosting ourQS15 Conference and Expo and we’re delighted that so many great toolmakers will be joining us to show off their devices, apps, and services. We’ve  asked each of our toolmakers to give us a bit more background information about their company and what they’re excited about. If you’d like to meet these innovative companies and the amazing people behind them then make sure to register today!

How do you describe Oura?
Ōura makes a self-tracking ring that helps you be your best in everyday life. By sensing your body’s physiological responses, it guides you to adjust sleeping behavior and activity level to improve your sleep quality and optimize mental and physical performance. We want to help people stay balanced, improve quality of life and overall mental and physical performance.

What’s the backstory? How did you get started?
Our passion comes from our own need to stay balanced and performing well in the middle of hectic business and family life and our desire to provide the same opportunity for others so that people can live up to true their potential.

Several members of our team have created consumer products, either medical, wellness, sports and/or mobile and/or embedded systems in different contexts. A few of us have done research and created algorithms, one for more than 17 years at Polar, the leading manufacturer of heart rate monitors. Several members of our team have monitored themselves for a long time in different ways. We knew that to get a long-term view on physiological changes in the body we had to find a unique way to access the data with high accuracy but in a very desirable comfortable design. We found the finger to be an optimum place for measurement and through years of extensive R&D and prototyping, eventually managed to fit a full featured computer into a small enough form. The ŌURA ring was born.

What impact has it had? What have you heard from users?
The ŌURA ring will be available for pre-orders in July-August, so extensive feedback from users/customers is yet to come. However, within a limited group of people and our own team, we have been using ŌURA rings – some of us wearing two of them continuously – for more than half a year. And with the earlier prototypes, we’ve collected data for much longer.

Since launching the product at Launch Festival in San Francisco in March 2015, we have met hundreds of people, showing them the ring and the App and sharing the science and technology. The feedback has been very positive. People love the design and especially appreciate our focus on providing the user with an understanding of how to improve sleep quality, adjust activity, and balance them to optimize their mental and physical performance.

What makes it different, sets it apart?
ŌURA ring amplifies the voice of the body. Through the App it gives an opportunity to better understand what choices are good for us. Since our lifestyles are unique and the physiological reactions of our bodies are unique, by listening to our own bodies we can adjust our behavior to stay balanced and perform well.

ŌURA ring is simple and effortless to use. There are no buttons or lights, it requires nothing from you. It just senses your body and its reactions when you wear it. It combines style and comfort with high-end technology, applying over three decades of research on human physiology and behavior.

What are you doing next? How do you see it evolving?
Over the few months, we are creating connections – our target audience and especially early adaptors – mostly in the USA, to deepen our understanding of how we can refine the benefits of using the ŌURA ring in every day life.

ŌURA will be evolving in many ways, based on the feedback and ideas coming from the backers of the early adaptors in the pre-order campaign as well as from those partnering with us to develop their own solutions and applications based on ŌURA ring.

How can people find out more about you?
Check out our website and follow us on Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest. And of course come see us in person at the QS15 Conference and Expo!

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Measuring Your Metabolism: Breezing at QS15

One June 18-20 we’re hosting ourQS15 Conference and Expo and we’re delighted that so many great toolmakers will be joining us to show off their devices, apps, and services. We’ve  asked each of our toolmakers to give us a bit more background information about their company and what they’re excited about. If you’d like to meet these innovative companies and the amazing people behind them then make sure to register today!

Breezing Logo

1. How do you describe Breezing?
Breezing is a mobile metabolic tracker that affordably, easily, and accurately measures resting metabolic rate through indirect calorimetry, a gold-standard method for weight management. The tracker syncs wirelessly with a mobile app, so users can track metabolic rate anytime, anywhere. It tells them the calorie intake and exercise plan they need to maintain, lose, or gain weight based on their unique resting metabolic rate.

2. What’s the backstory? How did you get started?
In 2012, we had the idea to miniaturize metabolic carts for assessment of resting metabolic rate. A researcher performing a human physical performance study at Arizona State University showed us one of the instruments at her lab. She was complaining about the cost ($35,000) and size (old desktop PC + printer), as well as the difficulty of operating it. The instrument was preventing her from moving on to more exciting studies for field-testing and free-living conditions. We decided to take on the challenge, and from there we developed the Breezing metabolic tracker.

In 2013, we launched an Indiegogo campaign to bring the Breezing metabolic tracker to early adopters. The campaign successfully raised funds to manufacture the first batch, and we distributed ~165 Breezing trackers and ~3,000 metabolic measurements around the world. Thanks to our Indiegogo users, we were able to improve the Breezing user interface, which later allowed us to validate the tracker with more than 300 measurements, using the Gold Standard method for indirect calorimetry. Today, the device has accuracy comparable to metabolic carts in the market at a fraction of the traditional cost, time, and size.

3. What impact has it had? What have you heard from users?
We have helped users understand their metabolic rate, the changes in their bodies, and their calorie intake needs. Our user base includes individuals who are clinically overweight/obese, those who have metabolic problems or hypothyroidism, and most recently, pregnant women. We’ve also helped people with fitness needs, specifically sports training and athletic activity.

In the meantime, we’ve promoted education efforts to demonstrate the need for measuring resting metabolic rate measurement in order to fully manage calorie intake balance and weight.

Our users have shared with us their success stories, and with their permission, we’ve featured some of these stories in our videos and blog. What’s most satisfying for us is knowing that we’ve finally brought metabolic rate measurements to the masses and that we’ve really helped people.

4. What are you doing next? How do you see it evolving?
We believe in creating better access to metabolic rate tracking, so everyone can measure and track their metabolic rate and caloric needs as easily as if they were measuring their blood pressure or their glucose levels at home.

5. How can people find out more about you?
Visit www.breezing.com , or stop by our booth at the Quantified Self Expo. We look forward to meeting you. We’d be happy to test your resting metabolic rate! Just be ready and prepared. Here the measurement conditions you need to meet.

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What’s Your Health Score?: dacadoo at QS15

One June 18-20 we’re hosting our QS15 Conference and Expo and we’re delighted that so many great toolmakers will be joining us to show off their devices, apps, and services. We’ve  asked each of our toolmakers to give us a bit more background information about their company and what they’re excited about. If you’d like to meet these innovative companies and the amazing people behind them then make sure to register today!

dacadoo

1. How do you describe dacadoo? 
dacadoo enables individuals to measure and improve their health and wellbeing using digital technology, data science and behavior science principles. dacadoo determines your personal Health Score – a number from 1 (poor) to 1,000 (excellent), a scientifically derived overall wellness metric, based on your body makeup, your emotions and your lifestyle. Along with the Health Score, dacadoo offers you a healthy living navigation system with which you get personalized feedback on your lifestyle, set goals, earn reward points, participate in challenges, engage with friends and more. dacadoo can be used on a smartphone and also works with popular wearables and trackers.

2. What’s the backstory? How did you get started?
The idea for dacadoo came from the founder and CEO Peter Ohnemus who was concerned with seeing the growing rates of obesity all around the world and the fact that there was no way of tracking people’s health in real time. Ohnemus thought that the answer was an interactive and fun way to track and improve our wellbeing. Together with a team of specialists, Ohnemus set about to create a platform that accurately depicts the user’s state of health.

3. What impact has it had? What have you heard from users?
We have awesome testimonials from user all around the world who really like using dacadoo to stay engaged with positive habits.

4. What makes it different, sets it apart?
dacadoo has a medically validated health score at the heart of our system. It was developed by a former MIT professor who specializes in life expectancy. We believe people want more than just simple fun point-based system so we provide a score that is medically backed.

Our Health Score enables the lifestyle navigation. The dacadoo Health Score can be compared to the definition of temperature scales – the world could only describe temperature as simply ‘cold’ or ‘warm’ before the Celsius/Fahrenheit scales.

Also, when it comes to tracking, dacadoo is device independent so you can track your activities directly on dacadoo or connect it with your favorite tracking device. We connect with most of the popular ones, making easy it for you to switch devices.

5. What are you doing next? How do you see it evolving?
We are currently working on dacadoo version 3.0, which has significant enhancements and new exciting features. Stay tuned!

6. How can people find out more about you?
We will be at the QS15 Conference and Expo in San Francisco.  If not at the conference, check out our website or read our blog. You are also welcome to view our videos on YouTube and follow us on Facebook and on Twitter.

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Announcing the QS15 Conference Program

It’s finally here.

Next Thursday we’re welcoming over 450 self-trackers, inventors, artists, toolmakers, researchers, and scientists to the 2015 Quantified Self Conference. Over two days were hosting over 130 different talks, sessions, and demos that showcase the ingenuity and expertise of our community. We create our program from the ground up, soliciting ideas from each individual that registers, and this year we’re excited to have over 100 different attendees contributing to the program. It’s going to be great.

View and download the QS15 Program here.

Here’s just a few examples of the amazing Show&Tell talks, Breakout Discussions, Lunchtime Ignites, and Office Hours we have planned.

Show&Tell Talks
THREE YEARS OF LOGGING MY INBOX COUNT – Mark Wilson
The number of emails in my inbox correlates very well with my stress level. After passively tracking this number for three years, I explore what this and other data says about how I’ve controlled (and been controlled by) this stream of angst.

TRANSCRANIAL DIRECT CURRENT STIMULATION (TDCS) TO MANAGE MY STRESS. – JD Leadam
Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation (tDCS) is an emerging “at-home” method for influencing the brain using very low voltage electrical current applied to the scalp. I’ll show how I’ve used tDCS in conjunction with self tracking methods to assist in controlling my stress.

TIME AND INTENTION TRACKING – Allan Johnson
Does tracking my intentions affect how I spend my time? Using an app for self-reporting, I compared how I spent my time when tracking both my intentions and time.

CAN’T YOU SEE I WAS FALLING IN LOVE? – Shelly Jang
As I struggle with the iron discipline required for keeping consistent logs, I am often forced to look into what I call passively collected data sets. I explored whether I can excavate data artifacts from past and correlate them with known life events. Using Google hangout conversations, I ask “can’t you see I was falling in love?”

28 YEARS OF TRACKING: BUT WHAT HAVE I LEARNED? – Nan Shellabarger
I’ve got lots of data – weight, activity, sleep, and health. I find as I keep reviewing it, visualizing it in different ways, always looking for patterms, there are still things to be learned.

USING HEART RATE VARIABILITY TO ANALYZE STRESS IN CONVERSATION – Paul LaFontaine
I measured stress during conversations using off-the-shelf technology. The results were unexpected and at times funny; with some lessons for me about my “fight or flight” response.

IN PRAISE OF BAD DATA COLLECTION DURING EARLY FATHERHOOD – Thomas Richardson
Sleeplessness and the pressures of birth and postpartum life drove me to to collect information and quickly discard methods that appeared wasteful. Looking back, did the kinds of information I collected tell me more than the data itself?

RE-LIVING MY LIFE WITH MOOD TRACKING. – Kouris Kalliagas
I used an email-based mood tracking service for several months. I never used the data in any way till I noticed something which triggered me to look back at my mood tracking data and search for patterns.

Breakout Discussions
TRACKING BABIES! – Morgan Friedman
Like many parents, I tracked my newborns. By comparing my records with those of other parents using the same app I learned some interesting things about my son. I’m curious to see how they play out as he grows up.

HACKING OUR MICROBIOME – Alexandra Carmichael, Richard Sprague
Today it’s possible to get data on the microbes that live in our gut using personal genomics. We’ll lead a breakout workshop on understanding and hacking our microbiome.

THE QUANTIFIED SELF AT WORK – Joost Plattel, Phoebe Moore
More than 13 million wearable fitness tracking devices will be incorporated into employee wellbeing and wellness programs 2014-19. We will discuss how self-tracking and monitoring are used in working spaces whether traditional or freelance. What are the advantages/disadvantages of quantifying the self at work?

AGGREGATING MULTIPLE DATA SOURCES FOR SELF-KNOWLEDGE – Anne Wright, Randy Sargent
We’ve been working on aggregating, visualizing, and analyzing data for personal benefit, using multiple self-tracking sources. We’ll share our methods, and invite you to comment, ask questions, or share your own.

SEX, SEXUAL HEALTH & QUANTIFIED SELF – Ilyse Magy
Cycles, lovers, positions, kinks, symptoms, stats, safety: how can tracking sexual activity benefit our experiences? We’ll talk about what tools you’re using but mostly dream up the tools we would want to use. This is a sex-positive, feminist, inclusive space open to all gender identities.

QSXX: WOMEN-SPECIFIC QS CONVERSATIONS – Amelia Greenhall, Maggie Delano
Women-centered QS meetups in SF, Boston, and NYC have created space for important conversations. Nicknamed “QSXX” (though not all women have two X chromosomes), this breakout session is specifically for people who identify as a woman to talk about QS experiences.

THINKING THROUGH DATA ACCESS AND PRIVACY – Kendra Albert
How do you view third-party access to your data: either by governments, advertisers, or corporations? Are certain types of data okay to share but others make us feel icky? We’ll focus not just on privacy “in general” but on specific types of circumstances in which data might be shared, trying to draw lines between types of data and uses.

WHAT IS THE SELF IN QUANTIFIED SELF? – Natasha Schull
How do digital tracking technologies engender new modes of introspection, understanding, and self-governance?

Lunchtime Ignite Talks
THE DIGITAL HEALTH COACH – Glennis Coursey
You might have everything you need to be healthy – wearables, health apps, a wireless scale. But without the motivation and support to actually get healthy, change can be hard. That’s where digital health coaches come in. Glennis shares what she’s learned building digital health coaching programs at Sessions and MyFitnessPal.

FIGHTING PARKINSON’S DISEASE WITH DATA: ROUND THREE – Kevin Krejci
Round three in the proverbial boxing ring between Kevin and Mr. Parkinson, as he updates us on his progress tracking multiples symptoms and therapies with multiple gadgets to slow the progression of this progressive neurodegenerative disorder. Sleep and biome discoveries highlighted in this round…

A QUEST FOR HIGH FIDELITY ACTIVITY TRACKING – Jamie Williams
Jamie will show us how he is building tools to capture a timeline of his daily activities and explore his habits through data visualization.

AM I BEING INTENTIONAL? – Beau Gunderson
The challenges of tracking (and defining) intentionality.

WHY I WEIGHED MY WHISKERS – Jon Cousins
When I was diagnosed with bipolar affective disorder, I noticed that my libido seemed to, er, rise and fall as my mood changed. Could this be due to a variation in testosterone? And might the rate of growth of my beard be one way of measuring this? I borrowed accurate laboratory scales and started daily mood tracking and whisker-weighing.

YOU HAVE NO IDEA WHAT YOU’RE DOING – Cara Mae Cirignano
Whatify allows you to collect data in a mindful way in pursuit of a specific question, instead of just gathering reams of data and then rooting around for insights. We use the most powerful tool of professional researchers, randomized experimentation, to help you easily isolate and understand one decision at a time. No experience whatsoever required.

FRICTIONLESS TRACKING WITH BEEMINDER AUTODATA – Danny Reeves
Beeminder is Quantified Self plus commitment contracts: data-oriented behavior change. But mustering the discipline to enter data can be a catch 22. We’ll discuss the myriad ways you can automatically collect data about yourself with Beeminder, highlighting our partnerships with other QS mainstays like RescueTime, Fitbit, Withings, Zapier, and IFTTT.

Office Hours
SHERBIT – Alexander Senemar
Your apps and devices are constantly generating data about you. Sherbit puts it all together so you can easily understand and analyze your information, keeping the integrated day firmly under your own control.

REVVO – Siva Raj
Revvo is a smart exercise bike. Unlike apps and wearables that track activity (steps, calories, distance etc.) Revvo actually tracks your fitness – and helps you train smart – so you see quick results.

EXPLORING TOMORROW – Ryan O’Donnell
Exploring Tomorrow focuses on teaching students how to quantify their daily interactions and goals through the use of self-management tools developed through the science of behavior to align each student’s values with their daily actions.

HEADS UP HEALTH – David Korsunsky
Heads Up Health helps consumers combine medical, wearable and self-collected data with personalized analytics and insights.

SIREN – Ran Ma
At Siren we believe that prevention is the best medicine – we combine smart textiles and user-centric software to give people actionable data in order to make informed decisions about their health. The first product that we are working on is a sensor embedded sock that tracks temperature, combined with a smart wearable anklet tracking motion that connects to a smartphone via BLE.

PERSONAL DATA BANK – Arkadiusz Stopczynski
Personal Data Bank with SafeAnswers allows users to collect, store, and give fine-grained access to their data all while protecting their privacy. With this infrastructure available as a service, developers can create applications powered by personal data in an easy and scalable way.

PROACTIVE LIFE – Daniel Gartenberg
I work on a variety of projects to track and improve sleep. This includes smart phone sleep trackers, providing different types of auditory stimulation during sleep, and figuring out alertness using simple reaction time tasks.

FITABASE – Aaron Coleman
My company helps researchers use Fitbit data to make discoveries in public health and behavioral science. Stop by and I’ll show you how.

That’s just a sample of the over 130 different sessions at the conference. We’re nearly sold out so register today!

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See Your Zzz: Beddit at QS15

Next week we’re hosting our QS15 Conference and Expo and we’re delighted that so many great toolmakers will be joining us to show off their devices, apps, and services. We’ve  asked each of our toolmakers to give us a bit more background information about their company and what they’re excited about. If you’d like to meet these innovative companies and the amazing people behind them then make sure to register today!

Beddit_logo_RGB

1. How do you describe Beddit? 
Beddit is a sleep monitoring solution.  It’s a combination ulta-thin sensor strip placed under the bed sheet and a mobile application. Beddit has been thoughtfully designed to be a non-wearable solution with no skin contact required so that anyone can use it. It can be used even if there are two people in the same bed!

2. What’s the backstory? How did you get started?
Beddit CEO Lasse Leppäkorpi suffered from myocarditis during a triathlon at a time when he was supposed to be in peak condition. He used a wearable chest strap to monitor his resting heart rate and recovery during the night. This was rather uncomfortable and the idea of developing a better solution was planted in his head. Later Lasse ended up working in a laboratory at Aalto University in Finland on a project where the team was trying to develop an office chair that would measure blood pressure without any wearable sensors. After years of struggling with a plethora of sensor types, one of the professors walked in with his invention … That’s when Lasse realized his chance and the first iteration of Beddit was born.

3. What impact has it had? What have you heard from users?
Sleep monitoring has become it’s own topic within the activity tracking industry and is growing in importance. Relatively inexpensive solutions have opened the eyes of many industries and researchers who finally have the tools to accurately monitor vital data from many people and in situations never previously possible.

We have a lot of extremely engaged users and partners ranging from the highest-level athletic teams to globally recognized researchers and institutes in the world helping us with product development and evangelizing the importance of sleep. Obviously as Beddit is designed mostly for home sleep monitoring, there’s still some product development ahead of us for a few use cases. We’re very positive that we’ll ace it.

4. What makes it different, sets it apart?
We boast a combination of a relatively inexpensive price, accuracy of data, and the device’s non-wearable design. We just introduced “Smart-measuring” coupled with our new Beddit Smart product. You don’t have to even touch or open the Beddit app in the evening to have their sleep measured!

5. What are you doing next? How do you see it evolving?
We are focusing on R&D and evangelizing the importance of sleep. We aim to become the standard for sleep monitoring that other businesses can build on. It’s most valuable when there’s long-term data which means whatever solution ends up winning has to be really easy to use and invisible.

6. How can people find out more about you?
A good place to start is our website www.beddit.com. You can also follow us on Twitter and like us on Facebook to see what we’re up to.

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