–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.
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.
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.
What were your first thoughts when you heard of Moodmetric?
I thought it’s similar to the Mood Ring from the 70s! After seeing the first demo I realized that it has much more dimensions than that. The technology inside the ring, and the user interface was really convincing and got me really interested about the project.
Have you been interested in combining technology to jewerly before?
Tecnology in our daily lives has increased and it has brought challenges not only related to usability but also how wearable the tech actually is and what is the message it delivers. How do the equipment and gadgets modify our wardrobe and style? Do we want to look like cyborgs or hide the tech? The tech is coming to dressing, jewelry and fashion.
The tech is coming to dressing, jewelry and fashion
People have used jewerly for about 7000 years and reasons to wear them have changed over centuries. The common factor has always been a personal relationship to the jewel and especially memories associated with it. Today, if we want, the tech enables saving the memories and data very concretely. The jewel itself can measure our bodily functions and quality of sleep, it can store pictures and moments that can be shared with others.
For me as a designer it is extremely intriguing to have a possibility to make jewels that can protect us, improve our wellbeing and health, and add quality to our lives.
What were the main things to consider when you started working with the design?
My aim was to create a jewel without highlighting the technical function
The starting point for the Moodmetric Ring design was the technology inside: electronics assembly and conductive rings, and equally usability and manufacturability. My aim was to create a jewel without highlighting the technical function. The purpose was to make a ring that the wearer wants to use in her everyday life.
What was the most difficult constraint dictated by the tech part of the ring? How did you solve it?
It was very challenging to have the ring fitting to everyone: everyone´s fingers are of different size and shape, and the measurement is very exact requiring the contact to be constant. One-size-fits-all was out of the question, as well as very wide selection of sizes. But we came out well, with a good fitting and measurability for everyone.
How do you see the future of smart jewerly? How you think the technology will affect the jewerly market? Are there some other trends in jewelry market that are upcoming?
I strongly believe that jewelry will have more functions in the future, they will not remain just decorative items. They can be equipment that link to personal wellbeing, to relationships with others or to the health and medical systems.
In ancient times the jewelry often had mystic healing or protective powers related to them by folklore that are now here for real.
You are doing a thesis work at the moment, and Moodmetric is a part of it. Can you tell shortly what is it about?
The Moodmetric project lit up my interest on the topic: design, handicraft, technology and the possibilities coming from combining them in future jewerly. I have over 20 years of experience of silver/goldsmith work as well as a designer and a craftsman.
Jewels and other personal objects should reflect the thoughts of the user, not the designer
Designing jewels is very close to telling silent stories and describing emotions. A jewelry designer tries to give a form to something we think or feel or create in us emotions that we want to share. And which we want to wear! Designing jewels is and art form that does not forget usability, unlike industrially designed everyday objects where “form follows emotion”.
I compare designing jewels to composing music: when the result is successful it is like a good piece of music that becomes a part of our lives and raises emotions in us.
Having so many things around us today, the desirability of a product is defined by how it resonates with us, what story it tells to us. “Idea of craft” is more and more essential in designing products with other aspects than usability. Jewels and other personal objects should reflect the thoughts of the user, not the designer. What I will bring up in my thesis work is especially the idea of combining humanity and individuality to technology products. I want to add some “soul” to technology!