What can be tracked in a lifelog? (Part 1)

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Lifelogging is becoming more and more popular with time. Over the last couple of years we’ve seen products for both hard-core enthusiasts, such as Traxier and other gamification services, and mainstream consumer products like the Nike Fuelband and Foursquare. Most services either have a social or a health aspect to them as well, sometimes both. Tracking for instance sleep, mood and weight has often emerged among early-adopter enthusiasts but later developed into alternatives for the consumer market as well.

So what is actually possible to log today? In a series of blog posts we will go through all the areas of life that you can keep track of and pick our favourite services for each one of them. First out today: the health domain.

Logging health is a natural start

Health seems to be the most popular lifelogging field today. The reason, we’re guessing, is that we’ve been keeping score of our different wellness factors like weight, sleep and mood long before there were any computers around to log the data. And now that you can track all that and even more with digital services, tracking your health is starting to be like brushing your teeth.

Here’s what we’ve found.

Track your weight

  • Withings – The Withings scale is not just about tracking your weight but also your BMI, body fat mass and lean mass. The data is easy to share with your doctor or, if you believe more in the wisdom of crowds than the wisdom of MD’s, your Twitter friends.
  • LeanScale – Follow your improvement and how your body weight and body fat percent are changing. You need a scale that measures both weight and body fat percent, give LeanScale your results and it will give you a great graph of your change over time.
  • Textweight – Each day you’ll get a text message that reminds you about stepping on to the scale. You just send a text message back with the result and Textweight will keep your data safe and neat online. It definitely makes weight logging both easier and more fun.
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Track your food

  • Shape Up Club – App for Iphone and Android that let’s you keep track of what you eat, count your calories and track your weight over time.
  • Munch 5 a day – Iphone app that reminds you to eat more fruit and vegetables. Great for kids!

Track your medicine

  • CardioChek – Track your cholesterol with CardioChek. Save your heart.
  • Withings – Yeah, not only weight and BMI. Withings also delivers a blood pressure monitor that, well, help you track your blood pressure. (You’ll need a monitor and a special Iphone app with it.)
  • Nonin Medical – Focusing on blood pressure measurements. These guys are experts on the hardware.
  • AgaMatrix WaveSense Keynote – Measures your glucose levels. (Important stuff, whether you suffer from diabetes or not.)

Track your mood

  • Mobilyze – An Iphone app that senses your mood by how you’re using your phone. When it notices you seem blue, it will tell you to go out and do something that will make you feel better. (Creepy or friendly, we don’t really know.)
  • Gottafeeling – Lets you track your feelings by asking you simple questions.
  •  I Rate My Day – Web application that want to know how your day has been.
  • Moodpanda – Iphone app that lets you track your mood on a scale from 1 to 10. Extremely simple! It can tell you how ”the rest of the world” is feeling at the moment too.
  • Mappiness – Iphone app that asks you to rate your mood by sending you questions twice a day. It’s part of a science project about how our local environment affects our mood. Cool!
  • Happiness for Iphone – An app with edgy design and a simple way to keep track of how you feel.
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Track your exercise

  • Polar – log your heart rate with a pulse watch, either when working out or just in everyday life. Polar offers different solutions to track and map your workouts etc.
  • Garmin – As experts on maps and navigation Garmin have created watches with a GPS connection that measures your distance and maps your workouts as well as keep an eye on your pulse and speed.
  • Runkeeper – Iphone app that helps you track distance and speed when you’re running, walking or biking. Can be combined with a lot of other services and have an open-API for others to use when they’re building health apps. Great initiative!
  • Sportstracker – Like Runkeeper but different.
  • Fitbit – Super advanced step counter that tracks every movement you make and the hours you sleep.
  • Nike Fuelband – Nike started out with a speed and distance tracker called Nike+. The fuelband however tracks all your activity, and are very popular already.

Track your sleep

  • Zeo – The Zeo sleep manager is just one of many ways of finding out what your napping pattern looks like. You sleep with an elastic band around your head that keeps track of how much you sleep and what your sleep cycles look like.
  • Sleep Cycle – The popular Iphone app Sleep Cycle logs your different sleep phases by measuring your movements with the Iphones accelerometer. Your alarm will wake you up when you’re sleep is light and you will feel well-rested. Brilliant!
  • Wakemate – Works a bit like the Zeo but with a wristband instead of a headband. Wakes you up at the optimal time too, just as Sleep Cycle.
  • Sleeprate – Uses your heart rate to measure your sleep and sleep quality.
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Track your overall health

A lot of services track overall health by letting you fill in different data for yourself or by connect other niche tracking services like the Zeo or Withings products and then use their data. Runkeeper is probably the best health data collector at the moment. With their “Healthgraph API”, Runkeeper aims to be the first choice for anyone developing services that benefits health. Other services aiming for that broader piece of the health cake are:

  • Healthreageous – A health management platform that makes it easier to keep track of your health. Your doctor or coach can support you between your visits.
  • Rootein– A coach in your pocket that turns your life into a game to motivate you to eat better, sleep more, quit smoking or hit the gym more often.

The field of health tracking is just one area on the map of life logging. We will guide you through them all, and try to draw the map in the end.

If you have any thoughts or comments, or if we are missing any services, please leave a comment!

/Memoto Team