Last weekend Niclas and Petri from Memoto attended the Quantified Self Europe conference in Amsterdam. With over 200 attendees the event opened its doors early on Saturday with Gary Wolf and Ernesto Ramirez greeting everyone welcome. Out of the 200 attendees about 90 held keynotes, Office Hours and Ignite Talks so the agenda was super packed to say the least.
As a nice starting point, Niclas had the opportunity to present Memoto in an interview with Dutch tech website Fast Moving Targets, which you can view here:
It’s always a treat to engage with the QS community. We got a really good response to our product when talking to attendees and early Kickstarter backers. We were also able to see a lot of new wearable technology, tracking everything from sleep, dreams and brain waves.
Before the conference we had been planning a special experiment together with Gary Wolf. We had four people use our prototype for one hour each in order to figure out the social codes around lifelogging and wearing such a device. How does it feel to wear it? How do people react? At the end of the Saturday we had a panel discussion together with all the participants and a highly involved crowd which resulted in some really great distinctions and clarifications.
The discussion took a swing towards privacy issues, which is a discussion we get into a lot and love to discuss. As lifelogging gets bigger, new social codes will have to be developed in order to create mutual understanding of when it’s ok to lifelog your life, and when it’s not.
In the end, when asked how it felt giving the camera away after the experiment, there was a consensus around it feeling a bit sad.
We would especially like to thank Gary Wolf, Whitney Erin Boesel, Joshua Kauffman, Maarten den Braber and Natasha Dow Schüll for taking part in this experiment. Also thanks to Kitty Ireland from Saga who shares her thoughts about the experiment here: The great Memoto experiment
A Year Well Sliced: Lessons from my laptop – Stan James
We spend a lot of time in front of our computers. Freelancer Stan James took this to heart and decided to record the time spent in front of his laptop for a whole year.
By automatically taking a photo every hour with the laptop’s web camera he was able to capture a large amount of photos of himself doing different things.
After countless of hours of manually creating tags on every photo taken he was able to show some really interesting facts about his past year. For example, as a freelancer he spent 212 hours working from coffee shops. This really shows how much a photo can tell you about what you’ve been up to for the past year and what you can learn from it.
Read up on Stan’s lifeslice project here: http://wanderingstan.com/lifeslice
8:36pm – Buster Benson
What happens when we make taking a photo a completely planned activity? For the last 1 819 days, Buster Benson has been taking a photo of what he’s doing at exactly 8:36pm every evening. Compared the project to other lifelogging initiatives that were talked about over the weekend, this one didn’t have it’s clear focus in data, but rather in curiosity of documenting this exact time wherever he is – for the rest of his life.
Check out all of Buster’s projects at http://busterbenson.com/
Quantified Self & Digital Immortality – Clément Charles
Could extensive QS data, enriched with exhaustive electronic memory and life-long cognitive information gathering, lead mankind to create digital copies of complete personalities, ensuring some kind of immortality? This was a fascinating and refreshing philosophical discussion evolving around science fiction-inspired technological advances, epistemological questions as well as the intrinsic value of human life and posterity. Especially with all the self-tracking we’re getting into, what we do in life echoes in eternity.
Quantified Self APIs: the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly – Eric Jain
Eric Jain from Zenobase led a discussion, with co-curation from Gary Wolf, that involved many of the key software and device makers within everything selfi-tracking/lifelogging. A recurring issue was the one of deciding a general standard between API providers so all data from different software and devices could be cross-run and correlated more easily. Other questions that were brought up had to do with granularity of data that can be exported/accessed through API, where the consensus was that users should have access to both bundles and units of data, and that a direct feed of data was desired in addition to a “user archive” of many providers.
In conclusion, we had a great time with lots of learning and meeting interesting people. Can’t wait to see you all again!