Microsoft develops a smart bra to measure mood
Microsoft researcher designed a smart bra that can detect stress. The aim was to find out if wearable technology could help to prevent stress related over-eating. Mood data was provided to the wearer by a smart phone app in order to highlight when “emotional eating” was likely to occur
A team from Microsoft’s visualisation and interaction research group embedded an electrocardiogram and electro-dermal activities sensors, as well as a gyroscope and accelerometer in the bra. Using a bra has been considered by the researcher as ideal, because it allowed to collect EKG (electrocardiogram) near the heart.
Efforts to create a similar piece of underwear for men worked less well, largely because the sensors were located too far a away from the heart.
Women, testing the technology, reported their emotions for about six hours a day over a period of four days. Microsoft senior research designer Asta Roseway declared: “It was very tedious for participants to wear our prototyped sensing system, as the boards had to be recharged every three or four hours”.
Wearable technology is increasingly being used to monitor a range of health conditions. In November a Twitter connected bra tweeting every time it was unhooked was destined to encourage women to self-examine their breasts. And a year ago a patent was awarded to a U.S. firm working on a wearable device that analysed breast heat in order to detect cancer.
In India and as a response to a series of rapes, three engineering students developed a bra loaded with sensors and an electronic circuit that is activated when someone attempts to grope a woman wearing it.