Measuring eotions unobtrusively

On Service Design we sometimes use what is called the “Emotional Journey” of a subject experiencing a service offering, and sometimes we rely completely on what the person can tell us about their perceptions on how they felt at some point when using the service.  But as we all know, our perceptions can be biased by many factors that can influence and change how we really felt…  But lucky for us we have some new technologies that can help us measure these emotions in a more precise manner but the best of all is that it’s done in an unobtrusively manner, following I present you two projects presented in the las UX Conference in Lugano, October 26th 2013.

Empatica is an italian start-up that is based on the premise of how can physiological signals generated by our bodies be correlated to our emotions: specially stress levels during different times, places and activities throughout our daily lives.  They’ve created a bracelet to capture parameters such as body temperature, skin conductivity and heart rate; this data is sent to a smartphone app and a processing software that is then analyzed by a team of experienced phycologists and psychiatrists to interpret the data and give counseling to improve the lifestyles of the subjects.
Even more unobtrusive we have the project “PSYCHE”, which creates an electronic textile where sensors, electronics and interconnections are woven into the fabric, for measuring of ECG, respirations, temperature, impedance, SpO2 measure and sweat analysis.  The integrations into clothes of several kinds of biosensors for health monitoring provide daily physiological parameters through a continuos, personalized, and self-made detection of vital signs or the tracking of the posture and gestures of the subject in the routinely daily activity as well as to perform remote monitoring of persons in different circumstances and situations.  This monitoring is based on a multivariable approach that leads to an enhanced sensitivity and specificity for the prediction of critical events.
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