Context-aware systems for supporting self-understanding

Since 2008 I have been focusing on how to employ collected user information to create systems that better support self-awareness and self-understanding within lifestyle management area setting. My current interest spans from determining what information and models would be useful to better support such processes to what kind of visualizations should be used to create user-friendly interfaces and interactions. The MyRoR system I have created includes various types of data, e.g., from ECG to calendar events and emails collected through various devices -both mobile and stationary- allowing for real-life scenarios to be better covered. The system collects user-related data through various sensing platforms (such as AIRS for the mobile phones, a desktop activity platform and a wearable ECG/accelerometer monitor) and stores it into a user-side central database, interprets it, correlates it and then creates representations that help people better understand how certain daily events affected, for example, their physiological state. Given the huge amount and diversity of data collected, I have explored various paradigms for correlating and presenting this information and I have settled for a combination of graphs and story-based representations. I also employ web technologies that makes it easier for people to relate to and also allow access from a variety of devices, including smartphones.

As self-understanding is a more generic goal, I am looking for particular application areas that could better benefit from such system. In the PAL project, the MyRoR system is used in preventive scenarios for helping both end users and their professional carers in determining relations between what they do and their health profile. Stress management is an obvious application in this case. The MyRoR system can also help in determining relations between the daily activities and heart rate profile, as well as in monitoring social activities (i.e., both in phsyical and virtual contexts).

Recently, together with Dirk Trossen, we ported and extended the desktop-based software developed in MyRoR  for a mobile (Android) environment. Building on the AIRS platform, we created the Storica app, which was released in Google Play in March 2013.

Here is a set of slides summarising some of the key aspects within this work.

Related publications:

  • Dana Pavel, “MyRoR: Towards a story-inspired experience platform for lifestyle management scenarios”, PhD thesis, submitted January 2013.
  • D. Pavel, M. Holweg, D. Trossen, “Experiencing your life: Increasing self-awareness through a story-inspired paradigm”. In Proceedings of the Pervasive Health 2013 conference, Venice, Italy, May 2013.
  • D. Pavel, D. Trossen, M. Holweg, V. Callaghan, “Lifestyle stories: Correlating user information through a story-inspired paradigm”. In Proceedings of the Pervasive Health 2013 conference, Venice, Italy, May 2013.
  • D. Trossen, D. Pavel, “AIRS: A Mobile Sensing Platform for Lifestyle Management Research and Applications”. In ICST Transactions on Mobile Communications Applications vol. 3 ed. 8, 2013.
  • D. Trossen, D. Pavel, “AIRS: A Mobile Sensing Platform for Lifestyle Management Research and Applications”. In the 5th International Conference on MOBILe Wireless MiddleWARE, Operating Systems, and Applications (MobilWare 2012), November 2012, Berlin, Germany.
  • J. Bacon, J. Singh, D. Trossen, D.Pavel, A. Bontozoglou, N.Vastardis, K. Yang, S. Pennington, S. Clarke, G.Jones, “Personal and Social Communication Services for Health and Lifestyle Monitoring”. In the First International Conference on Global Health Challenges (Global Health 2012), October 2012, Venice Italy.
  • D. Pavel. V. Callaghan, A.K. Dey, F. Sepulveda, M. Gardner, “The Story of Our Lives: From Sensors to Stories in Self-monitoring Systems”. In the 4th Computer Science and Electronic Engineering Conference (CEEC’12), Colchester, UK, September 2012.
  • D. Pavel, V. Callaghan and A.K. Dey, “Supporting Wellbeing Through Improving Interactions and Understanding in Self-Monitoring Systems”. Chapter in the Handbook of Ambient Assisted Living – Technology for Healthcare, Rehabilitation and Well-being, IOS Press, Volume 11, 2012.
  • D. Pavel, V. Callaghan and A. K. Dey , “From self-monitoring to self-understanding: Going beyond physiological sensing for supporting wellbeing”. International Workshop on Pervasive Computing Paradigms for Mental Health (MindCare 2011), Pervasive Health 2011 conference, Dublin, May 2011.
  • D. Pavel, V. Callaghan and A. K. Dey, “Looking back in wonder: How self monitoring technologies can help us better understand ourselves”. In 6th International conference on Intelligent Environments 2010, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, July 2010.
  • D. Trossen, D. Pavel, K. Guild, J. Bacon, J. Singh, “Information-centric Pervasive Healthcare Platforms”. In Pervasive Health 2010 conference, Munich, Germany, March 2010.
  • D. Pavel, V. Callaghan, A. K. Dey, “Democratization of healthcare through self-monitoring technologies”. In Pervasive Health 2010 conference, Munich, Germany, March 2010.
  • D. Pavel, V. Callaghan, A.K.Dey, and M.Gardner, “Supporting Introspective Behaviours Through Technology”, Intelligent Environments conference, Barcelona, 2009.