I’ve been experimenting with the design and data visualisation using the personal data values: mood, stress, energy level and inner peace. Depending on the data value the lines, shapes and tone of each visualisation varies. This will create a different structure for every timeslot in every day.
Inner peace will be a big organic and mysterious shape.
Energy and stress level will be pictured using horizontal an vertical lines respectively. The upper image is average energy and stress level. The lower is low energy and high stress.
Mood will be an arrow head/smiley pointing upwards or downwards. It is the most upper layer, clearly visible on the peace shape.
This is an experiment with combined output for 4 timeslots using real data. It gets a bit busy and the lines in different directions are making me feel a little giddy. So work to be done but it’s a promising start.
I’ve been working with plastic and paper to create different device prototypes. I was very happy with look of the plastic prototype. I want the design to be light:
The part I like most is where I stitched the plastic together with nylon thread:
But when I did 30 minutes of meditation wearing the device I nearly suffered from hyperventilation. It was so stuffy. Something that was less obvious when I worked with the paper prototypes. Also the plastic became steamed very quickly which points to the greenhouse effect it houses.
So I’ve switched back to paper. That has the advantage that it works a lot quicker and that you can glue the parts. Also the data is a lot more stable over time. The only thing that still needs looking into is how to make the edge of the cone comfortable. I’ve used the soft part of Velcro until now but it comes lose. I’m now considering felt. It is a beautiful combination with paper. I must decide quickly now because I still need to make 5 items.
The electronics are done, I need to calibrate a few more wind sensors like this:
But I’m getting the hang of it. It needs a soft subsurface (not shown). Asserting pressure on the sensor board influences the values… We keep learning :)
I’m working on the breath detection software and the device design. I’ve concentrated on detecting the breathing in and out and the event between breaths. Especially the distinction between in and out is hard as there is wind flow in both cases. So I use the difference in temperature to detect the in and out. I set two calibration points (by pressing a different key), one between breaths and one after completely inhaling. In both cases I take the wind value and the temperature value. With these two extremes known I can now detect the breath status in a rather robust way. View the screen dump from Processing:
I rather like the space look of the breathing cone. More work should be done on it of course:
Done some first visualisation sketches for breathing_time. I keep coming back to the ink metaphor.
But now I’ve made the connection with the Zen calligraphy tradition of ensō. It’s fascinating and beautiful and has of course a close connection to breathing and attention.
I did a quick mock-up in Flash:
It has potential.
Constructing the RBBB Arduino isn’t as easy as suggested. The manual says 30 minutes. If I don’t make any mistakes (to which I’m prone) I might be able to do it in an hour but no less. After I didn’t manage to get the first one to work I started out with a fresh one (I’ve got to build five.) I only made one mistake and when I plugged in the USB cable (be sure to chose Uno from the board list) and uploaded the blink sketch it worked!
I want to give the users of the device some direct feedback about their own breathing pattern. So I’m thinking about an LED that dims when you exhale and brightens when you inhale. I tried just putting an LED in the tube and the result was really nice:
Apart from the light I want to make the users more aware of their breathing getting input straight from their body. Tying the micro-controller to the chest (inside some kind of tubing) with an elastic band you become more aware of your breath in a subtle way:
And I did some research on flexible tubing. It looks nice and it is functional so I’ll probably go for this solution:
So things are shaping up. I’m eagerly awaiting the wind sensors from the states…
I’ve been doing some research and sketching for the breathing_time breath detection device. It could take the shape of piece of clothing or lean more towards a device/tool look. I’ve explored the possibilities:
I think the wearable variation is a bit too much:
As air is such a subtle, immaterial thing I want to underline that in the device, version 0, make a knot:
Version 1, use these really clean parts from the aquarium branch. It is actually used for oxygen for the fish so that’s a nice extra. I may add a box for the board and the wind sensor can be adjusted in front of the nose:
I think I’ll provide some respiration feedback in the device too. It will make it more lively.
Recently I received confirmation that my subsidy application has been granted! The subsidy covers most of the costs I have to make to develop a mobile application. This is what the app will look like on my new Android phone:
It’s basic but the visualisations are on the wearable itself and on the web maps.
Thanks to Prins Bernhard Cultuurfonds for making this possible!
I’ve finally started building. I’ve made an inventory of all the properties
and methods a list of items should have and now I’m building the background.
I’m very new to Object Orientated Programming in Flash. So I’m building and
learning at the same time.
In the pic you see the main background of (in this case) the Input item
list, the background for the more button and the unformatted title. All with
the right size and position. From this I can move on and add more and more
features now that I’m beginning to understand how writing a class works.
During my month of muteness I record a minute long video everyday around 12 o’ clock. I hope that my face will tell the story of what it is like not to speak for a month. I’ve looked at some footage and want to make three interaction modes with the data: 1) all films playing along side each other 2) stills from the film stacked on top of each other using transparency to see the facial expression change 3) a sliced portrait that shows 28 days in one face, rolling over will play the days’ video. I’ve made a sketch for that earlier.
I made some paper sketches when designing. – Note the cut out cursor on the sliced portrait :D
I finally managed to get all the stuff about the back-end workings of the archive part of numuseum from my head into a diagram. It’s a great relief to see all the subjects in their different visualisations attached to the correct tools and APIs. I’ve got so much room in my head now that I’ve got new ideas for an interface metaphor. To be continued…