Moodmetric at Emotion Hack Day

 

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The University of Helsinki celebrated its 375th anniversary with the Helsinki Challenge competition, that was launched in 2014.

The competion received more than 140 registrations, and after a long selection process – including startup-type pitching –  the winner was selected at the end of 2015.

NEMO – Natural Emotionality in Digital Interaction,  received €250,000 for realising the team’s idea: to add empathy to the internet.

Digital systems are not designed to consider emotions. As a result, the tools we have for expressing our emotions online are severely lacking in quality. This in turn inhibits empathy, the mechanisms that allow people to understand each other, connect and collaborate.

The research team including Katri Saarikivi, Tommi Makkonen and Valtteri Wikström have a huge task in front of them. Part of their project is to include others with events like the Emotion Hack Day, that Moodmetric was also invited to participate.

The event took place simultaneously in Helsinki and Montreal, and gathered talented people from all work backgrounds to spend 24 hours to generate ideas around digitalizing emotions.

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Moodmetric sponsored the event with the Moodmetric rings and SDKs for teams interested in using GSR in their project:

‘It is always fun to work with a new wearable technology and think of how it can be leveraged in every day life. Also, working with a company that takes pride in making the data interface easy to work with is refreshing, since it allows us to focus on the creative aspects, instead of the device interface.’  -André

The submissions are one step towards online presence – with emotions.

How can Moodmetric help an ambitious achiever?

Are you, or would you like to be a high achiever? Do you have the emotional power to handle it?

Some high achievers are always in pursuit of perfection. They are driven by an inner voice that is never content with their achievements. No matter how good are the accomplishments looking from outside, in the inside the person never feels good enough. There would always be room to improve, and more to do. Self-criticism is at maximum. Showing weakness is not an option. The pursuit of perfection is emotionally consuming. The tiredness is sometimes overwhelming, worsened by the disappointment in self, and others.

People in healthier pursuit of excellence are high achievers, whose inner voice is their genuine self. They have a  strong desire to accomplish something important, and gain gratification from success in demanding tasks. Their approach to good achievements contains more empathy, towards themselves and people around them.

They are self-assured but not self-centric. They are able to ask advice when needed, and understand the power of working together. Still, achieving much is a tough task and sometimes they can be on the edge emotionally.

The both types have one problem in common – how to tell when too much stress is going to make the path of productivity too rough?

Moodmetric services are aimed at high performing individuals, who want to optimize the use of their emotional capacity. Persons demanding a lot from themselves want to know where their personal limits are. How much more can I do and achieve, before the stress turns against me? The Moodmetric ring is a simple tool to measure long term data about how emotional load is affecting the wearers’ sympathetic nervous system. The trends are visible in a simple to read index, which shows the emotional load day-to-day.

The Moodmetric app also includes real-time follow-up on stress levels. This gives an instant view to reactions and stress amount during the day. A simple guidance teaches the wearers to understand their data in the daily context.
Moodmetric helps the wearer to understand the emotional boundaries. The Moodmetric ring and app are a very special and personal tool in building the optimal performance.

 

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GSR indicating illness

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In the middle of the best flu season many of us go to work feeling ill. It might be that the thermometer does not indicate fever, or even when it does, the obligations seem unavoidable.

The Moodmetric Ring is a sensor of GSR (galvanic skin response – or skin conductivity). It gives an interesting additional insight to measuring illness. GSR tells about emotional intensity level, the fight or flight reaction. The something you´d need to fight against, might also come from inside of you. When you are ill, the Moodmetric index gives a higher score than you usually get, even if you stay in bed. If you try to work, even just sitting at your laptop, the figures can be really high.

One of our customers sent us the below picture: She was ill, no fever but the general feeling of profound tiredness, head and muscle ache. She had the chance to stay at home and lie on the couch for the day. Still the MoodFlower looks like having been in hectic meetings for the whole day.

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The next day for her was like this:

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She felt better and was doing some light work like proof reading. With higher figures only between 9-10am, the day is seemingly calmer. Staying home for two days was a good decision, on Thursday she was back at the office energetic as ever.

GSR can be an indicator of both an acute pain, or an illness that is not so clear to describe. Self-awareness plays a big role in getting cured faster. Am I fit to work already today? The Moodmetric Ring can support in acknowledging that now it is best for me to take it easy.

 

 

 

Can I benefit of measuring emotions at work?

In November I was in and event to speak about emotions at work, and how uncontrolled behavior is no longer tolerated at workplace. The cost of abusive supervision – that is bad bosses – is about $23,5 billion annually for US enterprises. Companies are now looking for people that are emotionally balanced, people that are aware of themselves and understand how it would feel to be in the shoes of someone else.

A few weeks after that event, I heard that two of my friends have been yelled at by their superiors. Both are academic people with significant achievement in their respective organisations, and had never faced anything like that. They were among other things loudly blamed for things they could not affect, after the bosses had to face unpleasant consequences of their own decisions. Things had quickly come so far, that both of them were planning to quit their jobs.

People behaving badly are a burden. Their mood affects others and it is never anything positive. Many of the issues at workplace, especially stress and depression, are partly deriving from unacceptable behavior by a colleague or a supervisor. Bad bosses soon find their best people gone, as they are the ones having options elsewhere.

Self-awareness  is the first step in growing emotional intelligence. How do I feel, how do I behave, what evokes emotions in me? Learning to calm down in a hectic situation, and seeing the people behind the matters in hand are valuable tools for a manager. Sometimes things are just very difficult at work and unexpected things happen. Loosing self-control makes the chaos worse, and suddenly no-one works for the common good. A simple “Could we discuss this?” is often the best problem solving tool.

We are made of carbon, water and emotions. Emotions play a huge role in our private, but also business lives. Emotions at work can again heavily affect our private lives, possibly bringing and extra burden to our free time.

The Moodmetric ring is designed to help you to become more self-aware. Simply by wearing the ring you can measure what makes you react, what makes you feel intensely. A great benefit is to clearly see what makes you calm you mind. If you have sometimes trouble in controlling your emotions, you can learn what is the best way to be a master of the situation.

The Moodmetric ring also measures meditation and mindfulness exercises. You will get a score of your calming break and see how it affects the rest of your working day.

Contact us for more information about Moodmetric at work: [email protected]

 

 

 

New Moodmetric features: Emotion level alert and Step counter

The Moodmetric Ring as a Moodring

The new functions in the Moodmetric Ring help you to better recognize and understand your emotions. The app shows your reactions and emotional levels just like before. In addition two new indicators visualize your emotional state directly on your ring:

Calm mind indicator

Taking a moment to meditate or just need to stop your mind from wandering for a few minutes?

The Moodmetric number tells what is your emotional level on a scale from 0 to 100. If your Moodmetric number is below 15 for five minutes, a green led illuminates.

High emotion level alert

If your Moodmetric number is above 75 for five minutes, a red led begins to blink.

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High level can mean great excitement, stress or anxiety. If your emotional level is high for long periods, you might deplete your energy resources quickly.

You can turn both of these functions off, if you do not wish the ring itself to display your mood.

 

Exercise is medicine

The Moodmetric Ring counts your steps as any step counter.

The steps taken per day are shown on the app below the MoodFlower in thousand steps. If you reach the recommended daily dose of 10 000 steps, you´ll get an orange circle around that day in the month view.

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You can follow your daily average MM figure and steps. More steps might indicate a lower number telling about calmer mind.

 

Practice your mind

Mindfulness or meditation exercise in the middle of day might give an extra mental boost for the rest of your working day. Measure it with the Moodmetric Practice for a visual presentation. Learn about yourself, what do you need around you to have the most calming experience?

The new log function records the length and score of each practise. You can follow your progress and better understand the correlation between a calm mind and and your overall mood and environment.

 

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The dark circle around a day number tells that you have done the Practice that day. The orange circle you gain after taking 10 000 steps on a day.

 

Assembling the Rings

Emotion load indication through electrodermal activity or skin conductance measurement is a rising trend in the modern wearable technology. Most manufacturers use the word stress as a synonym for emotional load.
Wearables are typically forced to use dry skin electrodes in varying conditions, with movement present. Ideally the system should be able to detect, interpret and visualize underlying electrodermal activity changes caused by autonomous nervous system reactions.
Typically the following challenges are present:
• Dry and sweaty hands produce autonomic responses with significantly different amplitudes
• Different people produce significantly different response amplitudes
• Analysis is subject to constant motion artifacts
The Moodmetric algorithm is developed to produce higher lever emotional information of the wearer, based on the raw conductivity signal received.

 

The first Moodmetric rings have been produced. The ring is improved version of the beta sample, that has been in user testing since October 2014. The electronics manufacturing and 3D-printing of the covers of the new version was made in August 2015. The stone assembly could now be completed:

 

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The two steel rings with an insulation in between is the actual sensor needed to detect the changes in skin conductivity. The ring comes in four sizes: US (6.5, 8, 10 and 12.5), EU (17, 18,5, 20 and 22 mm). It is exchangeable which enables several users to the same stone. This reduces cost but note: excessive swapping causes the snaps to wear out.

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The final product is small and lightweight. It connects with the Moodmetric app automatically and displays your emotional intensity real-time.

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New technology for workplace wellness

Meditating business partners

Emotional health as a part of workplace wellness programs has begun to enter organizations. Active tracking and measuring are also new to employee health. Moodmetric combines all this and brings emotion measurement to the office.

The Moodmetric technology is based on measuring small conductivity changes in skin which tell about emotional reactions. A smartphone app gives you both live data and long term trends. Moodmetric helps to manage stress by identifying high and low activity of mind during the day.

Moodmetric provides a simple and nonintrusive way to measure emotional load at work. It also supports in meditation and mindfulness exercises.

 

Examples for workplace

Below are examples on how you can support emotional well-being at work with Moodmetric measurement. You can enhance your wellness program by adding this new component to it – work together with your employee health partner to create the best program for you.

Measuring emotional wellbeing

Using the Moodmetric ring for 2-4 weeks gives a good picture of emotional load and how it is distributed over workdays. Stressful meetings, and calm periods of the days are well visible. The daily average figure shows if there is a shift towards higher or lower emotional levels during the measurement period. Analyzing the results together with a coach or a psychologist helps to better understand the current state of mind at work.

Stress management training programme

Are you already aware that you experience a heavy emotional load? You can wear the Moodmetric ring at work for 1-2 weeks and meet with you coach once a week. An individual programme can be drawn based on measurement results. It can combine mindfulness and breathing exercises, small breaks outside – all during the working day. A second sequence of the Moodmetric measurement can be done in one to two months.

Measuring mindfulness or meditation

The Moodmetric app contains an exercise to measure calmness of mind. A clear curve is drawn during meditation showing how well the focus is kept. This is a great tool to take a measured break, even for 10 minutes during the day. Any disturbing thought declines the performance, so the result motivates to really clear the mind. If you are new to meditation or mindfulness, it is good to start with a guided exercise.

Specifications

– Battery life: ~40 hours
– Charging time: 1,5 hours
– Memory: 270 hours
– Bluetooth range: 5 meters
– Compatibility: iOS – (iPhone 4S or newer, iPads using bluetooth4)

 

 

Smaller and Smarter version now available

We are happy to inform that we have completed the design of a completely new version of the Moodmetric Ring! It has several improvements compared to the current beta, that was introduced at the end of 2014.

The beta version is fully functional and has been heavily tested for ten months. Both the ring and app have worked very well and according to all expectations.

We have received a lot of feedback, which mostly concern about aesthetics of the ring.  Size matters and we have continuously worked on getting the ring even smaller. The main factor is the performance of the electronics module, leading to what kind of battery it requires.

After a six month development process we have managed to significantly reduce the size of the module, hence the “stone” of the ring. This is a great achievement and we are proud to present a perfect example of an electronics miniaturisation project. After all, a reference device used in laboratories is size of a butter packet! In the picture below the Moodmetric ring on a very narrow finger:

 

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New features include an alternating current measurement, which prevents oxidation of the ring. Charging and low battery indication leds are added based on the test user feedback, and several other small adjustments have been made.

The Moodmetric app is free to download from the AppStore and works together with your ring immediately. It shows live emotion data always when you have the app open. The continuously updating Moodmetric number tells your emotional intensity level and is comparable among different users.

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The design and visual aspects are extremely important for us. However, we can not yet provide as many design variants as requested. We hope to be in a position to offer a selection of rings to fit the taste of both women and and men in the near future, and will let you know as soon as we have news about this.

We will produce an initial batch of the new, smaller version of the Moodmetric ring in just a couple of weeks.

Please contact us at [email protected] to order one of the first samples.

See here how the rings were manufactured http://www.moodmetric.com/assembling-the-rings/