● 28 yo Software Engineer / Bucharest, RO
● PhD in Artificial Intelligence
● Really passionate about sensors
Why am I here today?
● share my use-cases with 3 wearables at the
○ FitBit, JawBone, BodyMedia
● connect with people with similar interests
Why am I wearing 3 of them?
● actually I own 4 - a Basis watch too!
● got rash from Basis, searched for a
replacement with vibrating alarm
● ended up with BM + Jawbone, bought FitBit
What do I use them for?
● measured jetlag effect on myself after a long
● lose weight (12 kg in 3 months while eating
2500 calories per day: measure metabolism)
● improve my lifestyle in a sustainable way
Can’t you do that w/o wearables?
Big progress is made through small increments.
You cannot sense a 10% improvement, while
sensors can (subject to their accuracy).
Details about my use-cases
● sleep - more is not always better
○ after waking up with Jawbone, not going back to
○ backup alarms for 1 month; use FitBit as a backup
● losing weight
○ started to factor sleep in to break vicious cycle
○ able to sleep better & lose weight by shifting meals
How many metrics do I track daily?
Sleep (qty & quality). Expenses. Coffees.
Calories in & out. Steps.
Why do I track them?
Long term goal: sustainable lifestyle
I pivot my metrics every 2 weeks (usually keep
adding more, instead of removing old ones).
Google Spreadsheet + manual entry
Take a peek at my spreadsheet :)
Only part of the metrics here :)
How do you know it’s working?
By measuring indirect effects.
1. you have a higher energy level if you start
drinking less coffee
2. you are able to perform better in training if
you eat better (using MET/min)
Is wearable data trustworthy?
Some of it.
FitBit is recording steps while I am driving or
playing board games sometimes.
Correlated 30 days worth of data.
Can we use it in real-time?
Probably not. The only use-case I have found is
to check progress for 10k steps/day.
Drains battery. Bluetooth technology still
immature. What can I do with that data once
you push it to me in real time?
Best real-time use-case: toddlers
Onesie which streams pulse data to parents’
devices. Fear based! Nothing actionable.
But data is inaccurate. See B1 support forums
for problems while working out. Ppl are
recommending chest straps (less autonomy).
So what can we use it for?
Statistical analysis of all sorts.
Actionability comes from your own needs.
My own data is now Open Source
I am now officially your lab rat :)
Why? I want all the help I can get to make
quick, efficient lifestyle improvements.
Let me show it to you :)
● sleep visualization
● steps visualization
In progress: activity/calories
APIs landscape & TOS
Usually the companies producing these
gadgets own your data.
Unlike social media, API ecosystem is starting
out closed rather than open (e.g. Twitter).
Quite a bit of trouble to pull high-res data.
Are they comfy?
Depends on the person.
● FitBit Force / Basis B1 - rashes
● JawboneUP starts breaking down after ~4
months, but it’s classy
● BodyMedia is bulky but at least barely visible
BM strap poorly built / clunky software
JB breaks down / gets stuck in clothes
/ does not analyze sleep unless you press btn
FB counts steps wrong / sleep analysis UI
Let’s keep in touch