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.

TEDxCopenhagen talk: Human Data for Life

On May 17th I was invited to give a TED talk as part of a TEDxCopenhagen Salon Event focusing on technology organized by TEDxCopenhagen and The Danish Society of Engineers (IDA).


The theme of the event was ”Breaking Currents” and the ambiguous wording of the theme inspired me to the ambiguous title of my talk: Human Data for Life.


Videos from the event should be posted within a couple of weeks.

Quantified Self Conference 2013 in Amsterdam

As part of my participation in the fourth Quantified Self Conference I chaired a breakout session on QS Research where I motivated the discussion by presenting some of our ongoing research, including the Smartphone Brain Scanner and the Sensible DTU project. There is a growing interest and increasing number of researchers and scholars participate in the QS conferences, which was apparent from our breakout room being completely full.


App for the DTU Annual Party

A group of my students from my Mobile Application Prototyping class (spring semester course 02827) has developed an Android app for the DTU Annual Party, which allow the participants at the party to navigate through all the events and see where and when the events are and set alarms.


The app is available for download in Google Play. Congratulations on the nice work to Adrian Alan Pol, Albert Fernández de la Peña, and Javier Calvo Torres.

Personal Informatics Workshop @ CHI2013

As part of the ACM CHI2013 conference we held our two day Personal Informatics Workshop and hackathon. We had a record number of submissions and accepted 24 papers. Google had kindly sponsored the workshop with a number of self-tracking devices that participants could use as part of their hackathon projects.


During the two day hackathon five groups developed personal informatics concepts and systems and we concluded the workshop with a joint meetup with the local Quantified Self Paris Meetup Group where the groups presented their results.


QS Spiral: Visualizing Periodic Quantified Self Data

As part of the Personal Informatics Workshop at CHI2013 we presented our paper QS Spiral: Visualizing Periodic Quantified Self Data. The paper is co-authored with Andrea Cuttone and Sune Lehmann.

spiral1 spiral2

In the paper we propose an interactive visualization technique QS Spiral that aims to capture the periodic properties of quantified self data and let the user explore those recurring patterns. The approach is based on time-series data visualized as a spiral structure. The interactivity includes the possibility of varying the time span and the time frame shown, allowing for different levels of detail and the discoverability of repetitive patterns in the data on multiple scales.