Benjamin Johansen new PhD student

Benjamin Johansen joins the lab as a PhD student in the Cognitive Systems Section at DTU Compute under my supervision and co-supervised by Michael Kai Petersen. Benjamin will work on personalization and enhancement of the user experience in the hearing aid fitting process. The project is part of an ongoing research collaboration with Oticon and is in part funded by The Oticon Foundation. The working title of the PhD project is Personalizing hearing care and enhancing user experience by adapting devices to the changing mobile context. Welcome, Benjamin!

IDA Future Talk – Human with Machine

I got invited to talk about Man Machine Interaction at the new established IDA Future Talks. In my talk I touched upon the exponential development of machines and how computers have moved closer and onto/into our bodies to monitor our behavior and interactions, exemplified by the phenomenon quantified self. Being a future talk I specifically addressed the potential of this technology in future improvements in health and well-being.

Although most of the terminology used at the IDA Future Talks was in English the talks were in Danish. The title of My talk was Human with Machine (in Danish: Menneske med maskine).

Simon Due Kamronn new PhD student

Simon Due Kamronn joins the lab as a PhD student in the Cognitive Systems Section at DTU Compute under my supervision and co-supervised by Lars Kai Hansen. Simon will work on 24/7 monitoring of physical activity and energy expenditure in everyday life activities using smartphones and wearable sensors. The project is part of an ongoing research project in collaboration with University of Copenhagen in part funded by TrygFonden. The working title of the PhD project is Monitoring and Modeling of Behavioural Changes using Smartphone and Wearable Sensing. Welcome, Simon!

Personal Informatics at UbiComp2014

At the 2014 ACM International Joint Conference on Pervasive and Ubiquitous Computing (UbiComp 2014) we had the 5th international workshop on Personal Informatics.

pi_ubicomp2014This year the workshop was framed as the “Disasters in Personal Informatics: The Unpublished Stories of Failure and Lessons Learned”. The idea was to stimulate a discussion on the challenges involved in conducting research in personal informatics. Nine interesting papers were discussed in three themes as part of the workshop program: Personal Informatics in Life, Data Collection and Quality, and Engagement in Longitudinal Studies.

My PhD student Andrea Cuttone and I presented our work: “The Long Tail Issue in Large Scale Deployment of Personal Informatics” discussing issues in carrying out Personal Informatics research as part of our large-scale SensibleDTU study.

More festival apps – Roskilde Festival 2014

Like previous years current and former DTU Compute students have created mobile apps for Roskilde Festival as part of the partnership between DTU and Roskilde Festival and our research activities. The apps this year include:

Roskilde Explorer
The app lets you know, what the festival has to offer right here, right now.

exp_roskilde1   exp_roskilde2

Roskilde Festival Music Suggest
The app has been the Official Roskilde Labs app contest winner in 2013 and 2014. It help guests at Roskilde Festival explore artists playing at the festival and provide suggestions based on sources including Facebook, iTunes, and


Roskilde Decibel 2014 
The app allows you to visualize and track how much noise you are exposed to. You can get immediate measurement of the current sound level in decibel and noise levels directly on the Roskilde map. You can get achievements too by measuring sound levels around Roskilde’s stages or at specific times of the day.


ESOF 2014 – Science in the City

This week we are showcasing our research in Quantified Self and Network Science at the EuroScience Open Forum 2014 (ESOF) Science in the City festival. Our tagline is: Which factors motivate you to take more steps?

With smartphones and new wearable devices it is possible to measure many different aspects of our lives, including exercising, sleep and mood. But the question is if this technology can change our habits?


Our team from DTU Compute uses Science in the City as the foundation for a scientific study – and we use the official SciCity app to do this. We have included a step counter feature in the app and use the app to study the factors that motivate to take more steps. Our study is based on the two exciting scientific fields: Quantified Self and Network Science.

Quantified Self addressing how self-monitoring (for instance apps on smartphones or wearable gadgets) influence our self-perception and Network Science studying the mathematics that describes structure and dynamics in our social networks. Via family, friends, and colleagues, we’re connected to a global social network. In many ways, our social networks show who we are. And our research shows that this information reveals which fundamental values and interests characterize us. We use information about the connections on, e.g. Facebook to explore which factors motivate the user to take more steps.

TV2 Go’aften Danmark on Quantified Self

I appeared on the TV2 “Go’ aften Danmark” show tonight (May 12) to discuss the phenomenon quantified self (in Danish: selvmåling) and also the potential for our future health care system. The hosts were really good sports, as they had themselves been self-tracking steps, weight, body fat, activity, and mood for about a week.

goaftendk_20140512_1 smallThe show is available on the TV2 Play website (subscription required) starting out with a general discussion of quantified self and self-tracking and in the end of the show we discuss the future potential of self-tracking.

QS Europe Conference 2014

This weekend (May 9-11) I attended the Quantified Self Europe Conference 2014 in Amsterdam. Yet again a very packed conference program with lot’s of interesting presentations, show&tell, breakout sessions, and as usual 10 different things going on at the same time.


I presented our poster on Visualizing QS Data Using Time Spirals (PDF), which got a lot of attention from the conference participants. The poster was co-authored with my PhD student Andrea Cuttone, and collegue Associate Professor Sune Lehmann.


In addition I led a breakout session on “Strategies for Managing Personal Data”, which led into an interesting discussion of strategies, tools, and the common struggle experienced by multiple participants that personal data management is still a largely complex process.

World of Health IT

I got invited to give a talk on my research in quantified self as part of the World of Health IT Conference at the mHealth Symposium.

WoHITInterestingly the conversation recently have moved more towards discussing the potential of self-tracking in healthcare. And sure enough the conversation during the Q&A session was primarily focused on the potential and the consequences for the healthcare system (and patient) in the future. Some addressed this as a question of power and who has the upper hand (doctors and the system losing power), but I believe it’s not productive for the conversation to see it that way. Of course the stakeholders will eventually need to change their roles, but improved tools will be beneficial for all stakeholders. The conversation continues…

Quantified Self Global Conference 2013 in San Francisco

This week I’m attending the Quantified Self Global Conference 2013 in San Francisco.


Quantified Self, Personal Informatics, and Life Logging has gained increased attention among scientists and researchers. So at the conference I will be leading a breakout session on QS Research, where we will discuss challenges, opportunities, and future directions in this research domain.

Per Bækgaard new PhD student

Per Bækgaard joins the lab as a new PhD student in the Cognitive Systems Section at DTU Compute under my supervision and co-supervised by Michael Kai Petersen. Per will work on the Eye Tracking for Mobile Devices project. The working title of the PhD project is Enhancing User Experience on Next Generation Mobile Devices by Combining Eye Tracking with Biometric Data. Welcome, Per!

Andrea Cuttone new PhD student

Andrea Cuttone joins the lab as a new PhD student in the Cognitive Systems Section at DTU Compute under my supervision and co-supervised by Sune Lehmann. Andrea will work in part on the Sensible DTU project and use that as an experimental platform for his PhD project. The working title of the PhD project is Data mining and visualization tools for human behavior data. Welcome, Andrea!

TEDx Talk: Human Data for Life

My TEDx talk entitled Human Data for Life from the recent TEDxCopenhagenSalon event is available.

Over the last couple of years self-tracking has gained increased interest with the availability of smartphones and low-cost wearable sensors. The increasing quantities of data that we can capture about human behavior and interactions are key to future improvements in health and well-being.

Crowds, Bluetooth and Rock’n’Roll: Understanding Music Festival Participant Behavior

Our paper on Crowds, Bluetooth and Rock’n’Roll: Understanding Music Festival Participant Behavior is available in arXiv. At a large music festival (8 days and 130,000+ participants) we applied Bluetooth sensing to discover Bluetooth-enabled mobile phones carried by the participants, which enabled us to observe patterns of behavior in terms of participant mobility and offline social interaction. An overall summary of the mobility data collected during the 8 day festival is shown below.

A nice popular summary of the article was made by MIT Technology Review in Music Festivals, Bluetooth Monitoring and the Behavior of Crowds.