Music Habits Analyzed Through Tracking: Rocio Chongtay

Listening to music is often a passive past-time; we listen to what we like, while enjoying the lyrics and beats. Even without much thought, music can be a tool to help motivate a work-out, stimulate a drive, or simply aid relaxation in a spa. However, when we take an active role in our listening, we can discover very unique findings about ourselves.  In the next few days, we will share with you a couple of great projects presented at QS conferences and Meetups that demonstrate personal learnings gained from taking an active role in music listening.

At The 2015 Quantified Self Global Conference in Amsterdam, Rocio Chongtay presented her project Quantified Brain and Music for Self-Tuning . In this talk, Chongtay shares her novel and thoughtfully designed experiments in using music to adjust her concentration and relaxation depending on what she’s doing. Using a consumer EEG device from Neurosky, Rocio tried different types of music while tracking the relaxation and concentration dimensions identified by the Neurosky algorithm. She talks about the experiences she had with Neurosky in her lab, and how she turned those techniques to understanding something about her own mind. Have a listen to find out the type of music she learned that helps her focus the most.

We hope you can join us to share your learnings from a project, or simply be inspired at this year’s Quantified Self 2018 Conference in Portland on September 22-23. Register here.

 

 

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Kids and QS at Quantified Self Conferences: Cantor Soule-Reeves

Cantor Soule-Reeves presented his inspiring project, Fight for your Right to Recess  at QS17 in Amsterdam last year. With this project, Cantor proves how empowering data can actually be when analyzed.

Cantor is an 8 year old who goes to Richmond Elementary School in Portland, Oregon. The students of Richmond Elementary get 20 minutes of recess every day, however when it rains, recess is cancelled. And, it rains a lot in Portland—about 164 days a year on average. Cantor started tracking his steps on rainy days and sunny days and based on his data, he’s able to prove that every cancelled recess takes about 600 steps out of his day. This is significant for an eight year old. In this project, Cantor and Bethany (his mother) talk about the project and their plan to take the information to the school in hope to change his elementary school’s policy for rainy-day restrictions.

Cantor Soule-Reeves presents his project at QS17, Amsterdam, Netherlands

Cantor Soule-Reeves presents his project at QS17, Amsterdam, Netherlands

We hope you can join us to share your learnings from a project, or simply be inspired at this year’s Quantified Self 2018 Conference in Portland on September 22-23. Register here.

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Kids and QS at Quantified Self Conferences: Bill Schuller

To beat potential Summer boredom, hopefully this next highlighted project from Bill Schuller will give some inspiration. Bill Schuller presented QS Adventures with my Kids at the 2013 QS Global Conference in the Presidio, San Francisco. Bill started tracking his exercise and weight in 2010. His preschool-aged son, began to imitate Bill’s tracking behavior by regularly stepping on the scale, not to watch his weight, but to just check his numbers. Bill then designed tracking games for his son. One of them involved putting things away in the house while tracking steps and gaining “clean-up points.” In this talk, he shares more stories about how he and his children play with self-tracking.

Bill Schuller presents at the 2013 QS Global Conference, San Francisco

Bill Schuller presents at the 2013 QS Conference, San FranciscoThe pedometer used by one of Bill’s kids

Image of Bill's QS games with his kids

Image of Bill’s QS games with his kids

The pedometer used by one of Bill's kids

The pedometer used by one of Bill’s kids

We hope you can join us to share your learnings from a project, or simply be inspired at this year’s Quantified Self 2018 Conference in Portland on September 22-23. Register here.

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Kids and QS at Quantified Self Conferences: Victor Lee

Aligned with QS and learning, Victor Lee presents Quantifying with Kids at QS15 in San Francisco. As an educator, Lee spends most of his time thinking about how learning works. Lee discusses his QS project using a range of technologies (fitbit, Jawbone, Garmin) to track kids’ activities throughout their days. Lee helps the students work with their data, make visualizations and analyze their results.

Graph of the learning gains of kids working with their own data vs traditional instruction

Graph of the learning gains of kids working with their own data vs traditional instruction

We hope you can join us to share your learnings from a project, or simply be inspired at this year’s Quantified Self 2018 Conference in Portland on September 22-23. Register here.

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Kids and QS at Quantified Self Conferences: Morgan Friedman

In the spirit of our upcoming QS18 Conference that will be focused on QS and learning, we want to share some great QS projects from past conferences that incorporate our greatest learners–children.  The projects come from teachers and parents and even a student himself, presenting how they learn using QS methods. Summer is upon us and we want to highlight some of these kid-based projects that truly celebrate the learning process through both tracking and analyzing.

It is well-known that our children teach us many things in life—just imagine the learnings parents can gain from their children’s data. Morgan Friedman’s project, Tracking Baby Milestones: Surprising Results of Bringing Data to Parenting, presented at the QS15 Conference at Fort Mason, San Francisco does just this. Friedman shows the many parenting lessons gleaned from tracking and analyzing his baby’s data, even as a sleep-deprived parent. Morgan and his wife began tracking every little detail of his baby’s life right after he was born. Soon after, he built an application that sourced data from 3,000 other parents to compare his baby’s development with. By tracking and comparing baby milestones, they found interesting and important correlation. In this talk, Friedman discusses data, patterns, and surprising parenting advice they learned from tracking.

Morgan Friedman at QS15 Conference & Expo, San Francisco

Morgan Friedman at QS15 Conference & Expo, San Francisco

Morgan sharing one of his learnings that on average girls recognize themselves in a mirror 2 weeks before boys.

Morgan sharing one of his learnings that on average girls recognize themselves in a mirror 2 weeks before boys.

We hope you can join us to share your learnings from a project, or simply be inspired at this year’s Quantified Self 2018 Conference in Portland on September 22-23. Register here.

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QS18: The Quantified Self Conference. Join us in Portland!

Portland CityscapeWhat did you do? How did you do it? What did you learn?

These are the questions that inspire every Quantified Self conference. We’ve been working for many months to organize the 2018 meeting, and now we’re ready to open QS18 for public registration. The conference this year is in Portland, Oregon – we hope you’ll join us!

QS18: The Quantified Self Conference – Register

QS18 is what we call a “Carefully Curated Unconference.” We’ll have over 100 individual sessions, all of which are proposed and lead by conference attendees. We work closely with all the participants in advance, based on what we know of your projects, work and interests. The final program lineup is released a few days before the event. So please let us know what you’re working on when you register.

A warm thank you to Ziba Design in Portland, OR, whose beautiful building will be the setting of this year’s meeting. Due to the size of the venue, attendance is strictly limited to 300 people. We have a limited number of early bird tickets available for a reduced price. So please don’t delay.

 

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Share Your Method of Analysis Without Sharing Your Data

How the author has used sad/loving/joyful emoji on Twitter over time.

This visualization from an example Personal Data Notebook shows how someone used various emoji on Twitter over time.

We are happy to have a guest post from Bastian Greshake Tzovaras, the director of research at the Open Humans project, on a new way to share personal data analysis methods. Read to the end to learn about a data analysis contest happening this month. Bastian can be found online at @gedankenstuecke. -Steven

The Quantified Self community builds its collective knowledge from individuals sharing insights gleaned from their own n-of-1 data. Not only do we learn from these projects, we also get inspired to do the same or similar projects of our own. But it’s easy to get tripped up when trying to do the same analysis on your own data. Is your input data in the same format? Are you running the code on the same operating system? Can you get all the dependencies installed? What if you have never really written code before or executed analysis scripts?

In the realm of academic science these issues are grouped under the label “reproducibility”. A solution to many of these issues are Jupyter Notebooks, which can be used to share code for analyzing data. JupyterHubs make it easy to host these notebooks online and overcome the difficulties that come with different operating systems, software packages, etc. Open Humans, a non-profit foundation that helps people donate their data to research, is using this technology to make the analysis of self-collected data reproducible for other members of the Quantified Self community.

We just released Open Humans’ Personal Data Notebooks. These are run in the browser and give people access to the data that they have stored in Open Humans. Data from Fitbit, Apple Health, Moves, Twitter, and a selection of genetic data providers is currently supported. People can write their personal data analysis in Python, R or Julia right in their web browser and see the results there – without having to worry about installing any local packages on their own computer. If you are proficient in any of these programming languages, it is easy to write your data analysis from scratch. If you are unfamiliar with coding in general – or with Python, R or Julia, in particular – the Personal Data Notebooks offer well-documented example notebooks which can be run without any prior knowledge as no modifications are needed and can serve as a great way to start coding.

Code from an example Personal Data Notebook.

For all notebooks the resulting analysis and visualizations can be shared easily with other users who then plug in their own data. We have made it easy to decouple the data analysis from the underlying data. You can share your data analysis code without having to share your personal data itself. Since data sources inside Open Humans are standardized, someone else’s Fitbit data will work just as well as your own.

There are step-by-step guides to get started with Personal Data Notebooks and example notebooks which can analyze your activity data from Fitbit and Apple Health or perform a  sentiment analysis of your Twitter data.

To celebrate the launch of the Personal Data Notebooks, Open Humans and Quantified Self are running a notebook competition.

To take part, all you have to do is:

Gary Wolf, Steven Jonas, and Azure Grant of Quantified Self will judge and rank the submitted notebooks. The most interesting notebooks will be highlighted and added to the set of existing samples that are preinstalled for each user. The winning notebooks will be featured here, on the Quantified Self blog. If you want to share and discuss your notebook ideas, The Open Humans community on Slack is eager to have you.

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Highlights from the Quantified Self Symposium 2018

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We recently held a symposium where we invited self-trackers, toolmakers, activists, clinicians, scholars, and scientists to explore the impact of everyday science on cardiovascular health.

The video of those talks can be found on our Medium page:

Medium: Highlights from the Quantified Self Symposium 2018

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Join us by livestream for the 2018 Quantified Self Public Health Symposium

Join us today (April 19th), starting at 9am for a special all-day event about the intersection between Quantified Self and public health. The sessions will look specifically at cardiovascular health and participant-led research. You can view the entire program here.

QS CVD Symposium Live Feed

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QS Public Health Symposium Coming Up April 19, 2018

Mark&Dawn

The Quantified Self Public Health Symposium addresses the role of self-collected data in advancing health. This years meeting at the University of California, San Diego brings together invited researchers and advocates from diverse fields, including clinicians, policymakers, technologists, scholars and community members to share progress reports and initiate new collaborations. This year’s focus is on self-collected data and cardiovascular health. To request an invitation, please review the QSCVD Program Outline and send a short email to labs@quantifiedself.com explaining your interest.

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