Living the Measured the Life
Do you know how much R.E.M. sleep you got last night? New types of devices that monitor activity, sleep, diet, and even mood could make us healthier and more productive than ever.
What's the Latest Development?
A new movement known as the Quantified Self is measuring every aspect of their members' lives with the belief that collecting data will help them make better decisions. "In meetings held all over the world, self-trackers discuss how they use a combination of traditional spreadsheets, an expanding selection of smart-phone apps, and various consumer and custom-built devices to monitor patterns of food intake, sleep, fatigue, mood, and heart rate." While athletes and the ill have used self-tracking devices for years, a new generation of consume products have make the process both simpler and more rigorous.
What's the Big Idea?
Wearable sensors that measure vital signs such as blood pressure and heart rhythm around the clock could lead to applications we haven't thought of yet, says cardiologist Eric Topol, director of the Scripps Institute for Translational Medicine. Perhaps they could help people get a handle on health concerns such as headaches or fatigue, which don't qualify as diseases but can have a huge effect on quality of life. "People often get light-headed in daily activities," Topol says. "Is that symptom linked to an abnormal heart rhythm? Are headaches linked to abnormally high blood pressure?"
Giving our solar system a "slap in the face."
- A stream of galactic debris is hurtling at us, pulling dark matter along with it
- It's traveling so quickly it's been described as a hurricane of dark matter
- Scientists are excited to set their particle detectors at the onslffaught
The climate change we're witnessing is more dramatic than we might think.
A lazy buzz phrase – 'Is this the new normal?' – has been doing the rounds as extreme climate events have been piling up over the past year. To which the riposte should be: it's worse than that – we're on the road to even more frequent, more extreme events than we saw this year.
Once again, our circadian rhythm points the way.
- Seven individuals were locked inside a windowless, internetless room for 37 days.
- While at rest, they burned 130 more calories at 5 p.m. than at 5 a.m.
- Morning time again shown not to be the best time to eat.
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