Tag Archives: sleep
At every conference, a synchronicity will occur where a few talks cover a similar, but previously unexplored topic. At QS15, we were surprised to see an increased discussion of concussions. It’s hard to know whether this is due to random chance or a glimmer of the zeitgeist, but we like to take note of these little waves of how people are finding new ways to understand themselves, or in this case, overcome strife.
Though Steven Zhang had a history of sleepiness and headaches, he never tracked them prior to his concussion. But during his recovery from post-concussion syndrome (which worsened his sleepiness and headaches), he wanted a clear record of his progress. He tracked headaches using the Tap Log android app and tracked his sleep using Sleep As Android, manually logging in and out in the app as he prepared for or woke from sleep. That he naps often and has many unsuccessful attempts to sleep meant that automatic methods for tracking sleep, like wrist-worn activity trackers, were ineffective, an important lesson considering that good sleep data is still sought after by many in the QS community.
Visualizing his data in Tableau, he gained a sense of norms for his headache frequency and nap lengths, allowing him to test the effectiveness of a dietary intervention, the fascinating result of which you can watch in the video of his talk below:
Steven presented this talk last month at the QS Global Conference in San Francisco. To see more great talks like this, you should join us at our Europe Conference on September 18 and 19th in Amsterdam. We have a limited number of early bird tickets available, so make sure that you don’t miss out by registering!
Hello again! Here we are with another list of articles, links, and visualizations for you. Enjoy!
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.
My Data, Your Data, Our Data by Murray Grigo-McMahon
Notes from the 2015 Quantified Self Conference by Arpit Mathur
Quantified Self 2015 by Phoebe V. Moore
QS15: Measurement with Meaning by Ben Bending
The Future of Food Data: Toward Transparency, Personalized Design, & Re-Thinking the Concept of a ‘Food Label’ by Sam Slover. We highlighted Sam’s work on visualizing his food last year and it nice to see that work is continuing. I’m interested to see where this goes.
An Evening with the Consciousness Hackers by Nellie Bowles. Brain tracking and augmentation is definitely on the rise. Great to see the Consciousness Hacking group get some attention. (We were honored to have Mikey Siegel and Ariel Garten participate at the QS15 Conference and Expo. Look for their talk soon!)
Make people the controllers of their data to help the NHS go digital by Andrew Chitty.
There’s a solution to this too. Make it the default assumption that the patient is the owner or controller of all data relating to them. They can then share this data with whichever parts of the health service they wish.
This might sound slightly outlandish but think about it: we’re increasingly going to see digitized records become the norm, with many of them self-generated by citizens as part of their self-care – which we want to encourage, not only because it engages people with their own care but because it short circuits the technical barriers around information sharing.
What if We Really Set Data Free by Elizabeth Nelson. I had the pleasure of speaking at length with Elizabeth about Quantified Self, data, and data access. Make sure to also check out this great interview with Josh Berson.
The Crying Baby and the Sympathetic Fitbit by Jocelyn Wiener. A great article by a mother with a new baby who learned how sleep tracking can be useful.
My sleep didn’t get any better just because Fitbit started quantifying how crappy it was. But I felt validated, if only by someone with a rechargeable battery for a heart. While I received plenty of clucking sympathy from family and friends, my new device gave me something arguably better: evidence.
Is drunk sleep less restful than sober sleep? How much so? Why or why not? by Justin Lawler. Not sure where I saw this, probably in the #quantifiedself stream on Twitter, but this Quora answer is pretty fantastic. Justin takes the time to explain what he found when he ran a test on how alcohol affected his sleep using his Basis watch.
Quantified home birth by Morris Villarroel. A beautiful post by our friend Morris, who describes his tracking experience during the day his son was born.
Food Chain Project by Itamar Gilboa.
The Israeli-Dutch artist kept a diary of everything he ate and drank for the duration of a year. He meticulously kept track of his daily consumption. Some three years later, the results can be seen in a sculpture installation, the Food Chain Project. His installation, a traveling pop-up supermarket consisting of more than 8,000 white plaster sculptural groceries, physically represents Gilboa’s yearly consumption.
From a Net to a Harpoon: 2014 Annual Review by Michael Anthony. I cannot stress how beautiful this annual review is. Maybe it’s the focus on running that gets to me, but the whole this is worth looking through. You can even go back in time and view Michael’s reports from 2011, 2012, and 2013.
This week on QuantifiedSelf.com
2015 QS Visualization Gallery: Part 1
2015 QS Europe Conference: Scholarship Application Now Open
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.
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!
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.
We hope you enjoy this week’s selection of links, show&tell posts, and visualizations!
Hacking Your Brain by The Economist. Increasing performance and cognitive functioning, reducing depression, improving memory – if you could use a simple tool to get all these done, would you? What if that device was delivering electrical current to your brain? That’s the promise of transcranial direct current stimulation.
Talking Next-Gen Diabetes Tools with Dexcom Leaders by Mike Hoskins. Wonderful interview here with Terry Gregg (chairman) and Kevin Sayer (CEO) of Dexcom. Particular focus is given to their reaction and ideas regarding the open source Nightscout project.
Scientists threatened by demands to share data by Victoria Schelsinger. An older article (2013) about the shift towards open data and data sharing in academic science and it’s potential impact and possible pitfalls.
”’I think the public thinks that we’re all learning from everyone else’s work. That’s not true, and furthermore, it’s not true in ways that are even worse than you might think.’” – Heather Piwowar
Changing Representation of Self-Tracking by Deborah Lupton. It’s always great to hear that Deborah has released new writing. Her thoughtful analysis about self-tracking, data as culture, and data as object is consistently fantastic. Great addition to her growing body of work here.
Why Pets Are the Future of Fitness Wearables by Annie Lowrey. An interesting take on how the rise of tracking tools for pets may impact pet owners. Reminds me of research conducted by my old colleagues at San Diego State University: Physical activity, weight status, and neighborhood characteristics of dog walkers (Spoiler: Having a dog is associated with being more physically avtive.)
This guy is the Mark Zuckerberg of open-source genetics by Daniela Hernandez. A few weeks ago we highlighted an article by Daniela that focused on the fantastic openSNP project. She’s back with a profile of one of the founders, Bastian Greshake. (Full disclosure: I am openSNP member #610.)
Personal Sleep Monitors: Do They Work? by Christopher Winter. Superb experiment here to try and understand the accuracy of different sleep trackers.
What I’ve learned after 10 years of quantifying myself by Maxim Kotin. The title says is all.
A History of Checkins: Facebook Checkin Stats by Octavian Logigan. Octavian breaks down three years of his location checkin history and describes what he learned through examining seasonal trends, category breakdowns, and travel patterns.
I love the sleep tracker, so I can quantify this kind of information! (I have a 2yo and a 5yo….) by reddit user EclecticBlue. Fun visualization here of Fitbit sleep data. Also, great comments in the thread.
Locals & Tourists by Mapbox & Eric Fischer. I could spend hours exploring this interactive map of tweet locations by “tourists” and “locals”. (Special thanks to Beau Gunderson for point out that Eric also did a similar project with geotagged Flickr photos)
The Impact of Weather on Human Activity by Paul Veugen. The team at Human “1.9M activities in Boston & NYC to see the impact of weather on Human activity.” Make sure to click through for the full visualization.
FCC & FDA moving connected health forward by establishing wireless medical test beds
Nike+ Running Expand Global Partnerships
Will Our Fitness Data Be Used Against Us?
As the “quantified self” industry explodes, who will control the data — us or them?
This Week on QuantifiedSelf.com
Gordon Bell: Every Beat of My Heart
QS15 Conference Preview: Stephen Cartwright on 17 Years of Location Tracking
What’s in My Gut
Philosophy, bicycles and brains, opinions on tracking sleep, learning from actually tracking sleep, and visualizing work through vigilant self-report – all these and more in our reading list below. Enjoy!
Sleep apps and the quantified self: blessing or curse? by Jan Van den Bulck. Here at QS Labs, we’re very interested in how the academic and research world is colliding with those of us using tools of measurement previously restricted to science. In this Letter to the Editor, published in the Journal of Sleep Research, the author lays out an interesting set of opinions about the increasing availability and use of commercial sleep tracking devices. (You can access the full pdf here.)
Measuring Brainwaves to Make a New Kind of Bike Map for NYC by Alex Davies. Readers of the QS website may remember a great show&tell talk we featured back in May of 2014. In that talk, Arlene Ducao discussed her MindRider Project, an EEG tracking bicycle helmet. In this short piece, we learn that Arlene has continued this awesome work and has produced MindRider Maps Manhattan, exposing the brain data of 10 cyclists as they transversed New York City.
Big Data and Human Rights, a New and Sometimes Awkward Relationship by Kathy Wren. Earlier this year the AAAS Science and Human Rights Coalition held a meeting to discuss the intersection of personal data collection and human rights. This short article describing some of the key discussion points is a great place to start if you’re exploring what “big” and personal data means to you and your use of the tools and services that collect it. (Videos of the meeting are also available.)
How Theory Matters: Benjamin, Foucault, and Quantified Self—Oh My! by Jamie Sherman. A very interesting and thought-provoking essay here on the nature of self-tracking and data collection framed against the works of Michel Foucault and Walter Benjamin. We count ourselves lucky to have Jamie as an active member and observer of our QS community.
But taken together, Foucault and Benjamin suggest that the penetration of data into daily life is part of a larger shift underway, and that changes we can already see in social life, politics, and labor are not unrelated, but rather intimately linked.
Compulsory Quantified Self by Gwyneth Olwyn. I think it’s good practice to try and expose ourselves to all sides of the conversation around self-tracking, the positive and the negative. In this blog post Gwyneth describes a few ideas about the purpose and outcomes of self-tracking, especially when the self is superseded by the demands of others (such as in a workplace wellness program).
Sleep Data Analysis with R by Ryan Quan. Ryan has been tracking his sleep with the Sleep Cycle app for the last two years. In this excellent post he explores and plots his data (yay export!) to see when he goes to sleep, how long he sleeps, and what really makes up “quality sleep.” Love the fact that he included his R code and sample data. Go Ryan!
Quantifying Goals Using Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) by Bob Troia. No data in this post, but I found it particularly inspiring to see how Bob was planning on keeping track of his goals for this year. If you’re looking for ideas for tracking your 2015 goals and Key Performance Indicators this is a great place to start.
The Resume Of The Future by Eric Boam. The above is one of the two beautiful visualizations created by Eric to explore his daily work activity and interactions. This visualization shows what he was actually spending his time on. How did he collect the data? Well, he used the Reporter App to ask himself three questions: “where are you, what are you doing, and who are you with?” Make sure to read his post, he developed very interesting insights through collecting this data.
Weight Loss: What Really Works? by Emi Nomura and Laura Borel. Another fascinating data analysis project here by the Jawbone data science team. They examined the behaviors of a group of users who lost at least 10% of their starting weight vs users with no weight loss and found that the biggest difference in behavior was tracking meals.
Mapping my Last Two Years of Runs and Rides
While browsing the r/dataisbeautiful subreddit I stumbled upon this interesting tool/company that visualizes the maps of your runs and bike rides by connecting to your Runkeeper or Strava account. Above I’ve included my 2013 and 2014 maps. Clearly I need to find some new running routes in my neighborhood. (click through to enlarge)
QS Access Links
As part of our new work highlighting stories, issues, and innovations related to personal data access we’re going to start publishing a short collections links in this space. As this works grows be on the lookout for a new Access Newsletter from QS Labs.
Who Should Have Access to Your DNA?
What FDA developments in Diabetes mean for FDA approval in Digital Health
Open consent, biobanking and data protection law: can open consent be ‘informed’ under the forthcoming data protection regulation?
WTF! It Should Not Be Illegal to Hack Your Own Car’s Computer
Unique in the shopping mall: On the reidentifiability of credit card metadata
Majority of Consumers Want to Own the Personal Data Collected from their Smart Devices
Who Owns Patient Data
Los Angeles County Supervisors OK Creation of Open-Data Website
Enjoy these articles, examples, and visualizations!
OpenNotes: ’This is not a software package, this is a movement’ by Mike Milliard. I’ve been following the OpenNotes project for the last few years. There is probably no better source of meaningful personal data than a medical record and it’s been interesting to see how this innovative project has spread from a small trial in 2010 to millions of patients. This interview with Tom Delbanco, co-director of the OpenNotes project, is a great place to learn more about this innovative work.
Beyond Self-Tracking for Health – Quantified Self by Deb Wells. It was nice to see this flattering piece about the Quantified Self movement show up on the HIMSS website. For those of you looking to connect our work and the broader QS community with trends in healthcare and health IT you should start here.
So Much Data! How to Share the Wealth for Healthier Communities by Alonzo L. Plough. A great review of the new book, What Counts: Harnessing Data for America’s Communities, published by the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco and the Urban Institute. The book is available to read online and in pdf format.
The Ultimate Guide to Sleep Tracking by Jeff Mann. A great place to start if you’re interested in tracking sleep or just want to learn more about sleep tracking in general.
What RunKeeper data tells us about travel behavior by Eric Fischer. We linked to the recent collaboration between Runkeeper and Mapbox that resulted in an amazing render of 1.5 million activities a few weeks ago. The folks over at Mapbox aren’t just satisfied with making gorgeous maps though. In this post, Eric, a data artist and software developer at Mapbox dives into the data to see what questions he can answer.
General Wellness: Policy for Low Risk Devices – Draft Guidance for Industry and Food and Drug Administration Staff . On Friday, January 16, 2015, the Food and Drug Administration released a draft of their current approach to regulating “low risk products that promote a healthy lifestyle.” These guidelines point to a stance that will allow many of the typical self-tracking tools currently in use today to remain outside the regulations normally associated with medical devices. (A quick overview of this document is also available from our friends at MobiHealthNews)
The Great Caffeine Conundrum. A wonderfully thorough post about using the scientific process, statistics, and self-tracking data (Jawbone UP) to answer a seemingly simple question, “Does eliminating caffeine consumption help me sleep better?”
Four Years of Quantified Reading by Shrivats Iyer. Shrivels has been tracking his reading for the last four years. In this post he explains his process and some of the data he’s collected, with a special emphasis on what he’s learned from his 2014 reading behavior.
Pretty Colors by Chanlder Abraham. Chandler spent his holiday break exploring his messaging history and creating some amazing visualizations. Above you see a representation of his messaging history with the 25 most contacted people since he’s began collecting data in 2007.
Heart Rate During Marriage Proposal by Reddit user ao11112. Inspired by another similar project, this ingenious individual convinced his now fiancé to wear a hear rate monitor during a hike. Unbeknownst to her, he also proposed. This is her annotated heart rate profile.
Help CDC Visualize Vital Statistics by Paula A. Braun. The CDC has a new project based on the idea that better visualization can make the data they have more impactful. If you’re a data visualizer or design consider downloading the CDC Vital Statistics Data and joining #vitalstatsviz.
From the Forum
Join us at our upcoming QS15 Global Conference and Exposition on June 18-20 in San Francisco to learn how to use self-tracking tools to aid in recovery and get back into a productive lifestyle without overdoing it.
Maggie Delano was diagosed with Post Concussion Syndrome (PCS) after hitting her head over Labor Day Weekend. To recover, she had to give her brain a break from anything too cognitively stimulating, such as using screens, reading, intense physical exercise, and loud music. Maggie was able to return to work after several weeks off. She has developed strategies that balance getting work done with giving her brain a rest and preventing burnout. She’s been using apps such as Awareness to keep her mindful of how much time she’s spending on her computer, HabitRPG to slowly build back up her prior habits and self-tracking, and Beddit to help figure out what allows her to sleep best.
Maggie’s session is just one of the many hands-on, up-to-date, expertly moderated sessions we’re planning for the QS15 Global Conference and Exposition. This year, QS15 is going to be two full days of self-tracking talks, demos, and in depth discussion, followed by a third day for a grand public exposition of the latest self-tracking tools. Join us at the Fort Mason Center on the San Francisco Waterfront. We’ve made some early bird tickets available for readers of the Quantified Self blog (for a limited time): Register here!
Benn Finn has been battling issues with his sleep ever since he was a teenager. His sleep was suffering from the usual problems we’ve all faced: taking too long to get to sleep, waking up too often, waking up late, and being tired during the day. He made plan to fix his issues by researching what affects sleep and then experimenting to find out what worked for him. For four months he tracked his sleep using Sleep Cycle along with 21 factors that he thought might affect his sleep. He also created a “sleep quality” score based on 5 different data points, including data from the Sleep Cycle app. In this talk, presented at the London QS meetup group, Ben describes his experiments, what he learned from analyzing his data, and how he finally ended up fixing his sleep issues. (Special thank you to Ken Snyder for his valuable work documenting the talks at QS London.)
Slides are also available here.