Topic Archives: Videos

QS Access: Ian Eslick on Personal Experimentation

“Science is really about repeatability, about process, about discipline, about characterization, about controlling noise, and there are lot of different mechanisms that we can pull together to tell a story or inform a decision.”- Ian Eslick

This past April we were lucky to host a meeting of researchers, toolmakers, science funders, and government representatives for our first Quantified Self Public Health Symposium. This one-day meeting, and the work leading up to it, helped to shape our thoughts and ideas around what data access means and how it can be used to shape personal and public health. Access can take on a variety of different meanings from being able to obtain a copy of your data, to being able to contribute to and use public data sets. But access doesn’t always have to deal with the transfer of bytes of information. What about access to process, people, and ideas?

At that 2014 Quantified Self Public Health Symposium we were happy to have Ian Eslick join us and give a short talk about personal data and the scientific process. Access to the methods of science and the scientific process is an important piece of the puzzle, especially as personal data become easily captured and more readily understood. Too often, the world of science and research is help up on a pedestal, out of reach for individuals struggling to understand themselves. In this talk, Ian touches on his personal journey of self-experimentation and how access to the “tools of science” can be highly impactful, especially for those battling chronic conditions.

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Fabio Ricardo dos Santos on Using Relationship Data to Navigate a Chaotic Life

I’m fascinated by self-tracking projects that focus on things that are hard to quantify.

Such is the case here. Fabio Ricardo dos Santos is gregarious and likes to be around people. A lot of people. But he had a nagging sense that something was out of balance.

To better understand why, he began to track his relationships and interactions. He soon found that out of the people that he knows, only about 14% are what he considered to be important relationships and that they made up 34% of his interactions. He felt that this number was too low and it spurred him to spend more time with that important 14%.

But he didn’t just track his time with people and the number of interactions. He expanded his system to include the quality of his relationships and interactions. He found that this made him focus on face-to-face interactions and video chats over emails and texts.

The other side of this, though, is that when you have a system where you rate and rank your relationships, how does it not seem like you are rating people? What are the implications of doing so?

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Sebastien Le Tuan: Tracking Punctuality

Sebastien Le Tuan was chronically late. Only after a candid conversation with his father did he realize what affect this might have on his personal and professional life. In this talk, presented at the Bay Area QS Meetup, Sebastien describes how he started tracking his punctuality and what he learned from the process.

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Bill Schuller: The Quantified Talk

We’ve featured Bill Schuller here on the Quantifief Self website before. He’s given some great talks about tracking with his children. However, Bill hasn’t been satisfied with these or his other previous public speaking efforts. So like any good self-tracker he set out to see what he could learn from tracking and measuring his public speaking. In this meta-talk, presented at the Bay Area QS meetup group, Bill presents some of the tools he was using in real-time to measure himself and the audience. Once your done viewing this talk make sure to send Bill feedback by filling out his short survey here.

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Julie Price: 30lbs of Family Visits, Races, and Games

Julie Price has been tracking her weight consistently for the last four years. Like many of us, she found that her weight goes up and down depending on various life events. In this talk, presented at the Bay Area QS meetup group, Julie discussed what she’s learned about her weight and what correlates with weight gain and weight loss. Specifically, she focuses on the role of family gatherings, exercise and running races, and how different food and dieting methods either helped of hindered her progress.

We’re excited to have Julie joining us at our 2015 QS Global Conference and Exposition on June 18-20th. Early bird tickets are now available, and we hope you can join us for a great three days of learning, sharing, and experiencing the latest in QS techniques and tools. Register now.

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Mike Brown: Learning from Experimentation

A few years ago Mike Brown was searching for inspiration while working at his first post-collegiate job. He decided to start a personal blog to document a series of monthly projects that would challenge his current way of living and help him learn about himself. In this talk, presented at the Boston QS meetup group, Mike talks about a few of his experiments, including tracking his garbage and possessions, understanding his social life through random photo taking, and learning about his optimal exercise.

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David Joerg: Building My Personal Operating System

David Joerg is a software developer in New York City and had some interest in personal data. Inspired by attending his first QS meetup in late 2013, he decided to take a deeper dive into the data he was collecting, add some new systems, and see if he could build something to help him better understand himself. What he ended up building was his own data dashboard, a personal operating system, that allowed him to see how he was doing across the various metrics he was interested in including, sleep, exercise, weight, unread emails, and more. In this talk, presented at the New York QS meetup group, David explains his process and what he learned from developing and using this system.

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Greg Schwartz: Quantified Dating

Greg Schwartz has spent a lot of time thinking about his dating life. In this entertaining and interesting talk, presented at the Bay Area QS meetup group, Greg walked through a deep dive into the data he’s been able to collect about his dating interactions and online dating experience. This includes a thorough analysis of his messaging history, where he found out that messages between 200-300 characters tend to work best. Not satisfied with only exploring his own data, he also embarked on an interesting exercise where he was able to see and interact with his sister’s online dating profile.

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Ian Billett: Tracking My Time, My Life

The days I use my time wisely are the days when I feel most fuliflled and therefore happy.

Ian Billett stumbled upon our Quantified Self website here and instantly became fascinated by our community of individuals who were learning about themselves through different technology. With his interest piqued, he began to investigate how he could understand himself. He started with a self-designed Excel spreadsheet where he manually tracked every five minutes using his own tagging system. He’s since switched to even more fine-grained tracking, tagging every minute of his life to describe what he was doing and who he was with. In this talk, presented at the London QS meetup group, Ian describes his process and some of his recent findings.

Slides are also available here.

Special thank you to Ken Snyder for his valuable work documenting the talks at QS London.

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Nan Shellabarger: 26 Years of Weight Tracking

“When I look at this, this is the story of my life in these years.”

NanS_26yrsweight

Nan Shellabarger has been tracking her weight for 26 years, including almost daily tracking since 1998. In the talk embedded below, presented at the Washington DC QS meetup group, Nan describes her experience with diving deep into how she’s making sense of her weight data. By looking over her complete history and layering in her personal contextual data she was able to find how different life events played a role in weight loss and gain. For example, she found that physical challenges and events were “tremendous motivation to get out there and doing things as well as helping me focusing on my eating.” Nan has also used a variety of activity trackers since 2010, starting with the Body Media Fit and now the Garmin Vivofit and Jawbone UP. These devices helped her explore calorie expenditure as it relates to her weight loss. On the other side of the equation, she also explored how diet tracking influenced her weight. Watch her great talk below to hear the whole story.

We hope to see an update of this great talk when Nan joins us at our QS15 Global Conference and Exposition next June in San Francisco. Early bird tickets are available for a limited time. Register now!

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