Posted by: psilva | October 14, 2014

My Sensored Family


The Important Things

IMG_1360 Lately I’ve been writing a bunch about the Internet of Things or IoT. You know, where everyday objects have software, chips, and sensors to capture data and report back. Household items like refrigerators, toilets and thermostats along with clothing, cars and soon, the entire home will be connected. Many of these devices provide actionable data – or just fun entertainment – so people can make decisions about whatever is being monitored. It can also help save lives.

Recently my daughter became a robot, at least according to her.

My daughter has a rare genetic disorder called HI/HA GDH – Hyperinsulinism/Hyperammonemia Syndrome in the Glutamate Dehydrogenase gene. Say that 3 times fast. Basically, she produces too much insulin (extreme hypoglycemic) and too much ammonia. She gets blood work done every couple months and recently we’ve had some concerning numbers on those reports. While we certainly check her blood multiple times a day, the doctor wanted to get a more precise reading over the course of a few days to determine a plan of action. Enter the sensor.

IMG_1358 The doctor installed a Medtronic Sof-Sensor Glucose meter which measured her blood sugars every 5 minutes and stored it on a chip. They also have models which transmit the BSL to a base for instant readings. Out of the package, the device has a needle almost tented over the sensor. You put it in an apparatus which punches the needle and sensor into the skin. You remove the needle and the sensor stays. You then connect it to a clam shell looking thing which houses the microprocessor. Tape over it, go on with your daily routine and the sensor does the rest. While she had hers in for 3 days, there are some that can be inserted for longer term measurements. After our three days, we pulled it out and retuned it to the doctor. Pulling the tape off her skin hurt more than yanking the sensor out.

They connected the storage to a computer and retrieved the data. We could match the charted times and readings (along with a daily food diary) with the regular meter readings to get a great overall picture of what might be causing some of the recent abnormalities. From that, we got our medical marching orders and so far it seems like things are moving in the right direction. The parental worries have also dwindled now that we know what’s going on. That anxiety is part of the challenge whether you’re a global business or a parent…the data and context to make informed, knowledgeable decisions about a path forward. Sometimes sensors can provide that.

This Internet of Nouns trend is still in the early stages and many of our already connected gadgets do provide human benefits over the typical infotainment. While IoT is certainly interesting and the wave is building, I’m not particularly rushing to get everything or everyone connected like that…except for our micro chipped dog. But in this instance, installing a sensor in my daughter’s side for a few days made all the difference in the world.

And gave us some uncensored peace of mind.

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Posted by: psilva | October 7, 2014

Play Ball!


…Oh Wait, Let Me Check the Stat-Cloud First!

My 1982 Wilson A2000 It is like a SAT question: Cincinnati Reds Billy Hamilton has a 10.83 foot lead off first base, can hit a top speed of 21.51 mph and clocked a jump of 0.49 seconds. If the Milwaukee Brewers catcher took 0.667 seconds to to get the ball out of his glove to throw to second and the ball is travelling at 78.81 mph, is Hamilton safe or out?

A few weeks ago I wrote about the Internet of Sports, and can’t believe I missed this one. But with the MLB playoffs in full gear, I didn’t want this to slip through the IoT cracks. Sports analytics has been around for a while but never to this degree.

Just like the NFL, Major League Baseball is equipping stadiums with technologies that can track moving players, flying baseballs and accurate throws. More than the RBIs, hits and stolen bases that appear on the back of trading cards, new technology (and software) also gathers stats like pop-fly pursuit range or average ground ball response time. Professional sports teams have always tracked their players’ performance and often such milestones are included in the player’s contract. Bonus for so many games played, or home runs hit or some other goal. With all this new detailed data, teams can adjust how they train, prepare for games and even player value for personnel moves like trades.

For the 2014 season, only 3 stadiums (Mets, Brewers, Twins) had the new Field f/x (Sportvision Inc.) system but the league plans to have all 30 parks complete for the 2015 season. Field f/x can show data such as the angle of elevation of a batted ball, the highest point in its trajectory and the distance covered and top speed attained by a player attempting to field a ball. Of course all this can then be crunched for cool graphics during a replay. Cameras, sensors and software are all now part of the game.

So are data centers, clouds and high speed links.

All this data needs to be crunched somewhere and more often it is in a cloud environment. Add to that, the connection(s) to the fans and with the fans at the stadium. Levi’s Stadium, for instance, has 1200 access points and an app that allows you to order food, watch instant replays and know which bathroom line is the shortest. Our sports stadiums are becoming data centers.

Announcer: Welcome to Exclusive Sponsor Data Center Field! Home of the Hypertext Transfer Protocols. Undefeated at home this year, the Prots look to extend their record and secure home field throughout the playoffs.

And of you were wondering, Hamilton was Safe.

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Posted by: psilva | October 1, 2014

Oracle OpenWorld 2014: That’s a Wrap!


I wrap it up from #OOW14. Special thanks to guests Dana Gauthier, Jonathan George, David Wallace and Rubyanne Deang along with Natasha, Robert, Jonathan & Courtney for their spectacular camera work. And of course, thanks to you for watching. I also give a quick update on the Shellshock vulnerability and how to find information on f5.com. Reporting from San Francisco, that’s a wrap!

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Rubyanne Deang, F5 Global Field Systems Engineer, shares some insight on many identity and access challenges organizations face when deploying applications in the cloud. Multiple directories, orphaned accounts and business risk all make the list. Not to leave you hanging however, she also guides on how organizations can solve this dilemma with BIG-IP.

 

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Oracle’s David Wallace, Director of Partner Architected Solutions, takes over the mic – literally – and offers some insight of the F5 and Oracle global partnership…from an Oracle perspective. After many years and many joint solutions, David covers some of the coolest F5/Oracle integrations that are being used by 47 of the top Fortune 50 companies. Very well versed in our joint solutions, David has joined the F5 booth staff for the last 4 years at #OOW14.

 

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Jonathan George, F5 Sr. Product Marketing Manager, shares some insight on how F5 can help deliver Oracle applications from the cloud. From DNS, to application heath to identity management to security to disaster recovery to cloud migration, Jonathan gives some great tips to those looking to expand into a hybrid model.

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Dana Gauthier, F5 Sr. Business Development Manager, talks about some of the highlights of the more than 15 different solutions from F5 & Oracle partnership. He also discusses the customer benefits of deep integration and collaboration in today’s software defined data centers.

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Posted by: psilva | September 28, 2014

Oracle OpenWorld 2014: Find F5


I show you how to find F5 Booth 1837 at Oracle OpenWorld 2014. The theme this year is Digital Disruption and how that’s contributing to the massive business transformation occurring. Get a behind the scenes view of trade show prep along with a sneak peek at the F5 giveaways! We’ll be here all week. Dateline San Francisco.

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Posted by: psilva | September 24, 2014

I Think, Therefore I am Connected


A plastic hanger is NOT a Thinkable Descartes proclaimed that since we can think, it was proof that we existed. Well today, we exist in a connected world and while wearables seem to be all the rage – at least according to me – soon those hot items might be kicked to the curb with the next hottest thing: Thinkables.

You heard, or rather read that right. Thinkable. Just what is a thinkable? Well, it is a wearable (on your head) but it tracks brain activity. Muse is the first consumer-focused headband that reads brain activity and helps you to stop thinking so much. That’s right, ahhhh…ummmm…errrr…what was that again? Oh yeah, stop thinking. It is a Bluetooth connected headset that helps you meditate. It also comes with an app called Muse Calm which tracks your Zen like state. It turns meditation into a game and you only need to play it 3 minutes a day.

Meditation can help people with anxiety, heart problems, headaches and other ails. Every morning on my walk/run I meditate and chant. Sometimes it is a Buddhist phrase or a Hawaiian chant over and over and over mixed with whatever song is in my head. It certainly does help me clear my brain but also prepare for the day. Without getting all religious or philosophical, but I am able to connect with whatever energy is stirring in the universe. Over the years, many personal roadblocks were suddenly cleared since that ‘ah ha!’ moment instantly appeared. ‘Why didn’t I think of that earlier?‘ I wonder to myself. It came to me since my brain was uncluttered. Einstein said that he didn’t want to remember his own phone number since he could look it up (reference it) and he didn’t want to clutter his brain with useless information. Have you ever noticed that some of the best ideas come when your brain is wandering or not really focusing on a single task?

But back to the Muse.

After installing on your head, it’ll calibrate with your brain (and the app) and then will tell you to think of a few things. This is to get your brain away from what it is currently doing and light up your frontal lobes. Based on the initial brain readings, it’ll then take you through a meditation session. When you brain is starting to slow down and your calm(er) self is focusing on breathing, you’ll hear a breeze. The weather you hear reflects the state of your brain and if your mind wanders, the weather will change. If you go deeper into relaxation, then the birds start chirping. The more birds that are singing, the more Zen like you are. The app will also report how much of the time your brain spent in three categories: Active, Neutral and Calm. As far as the game aspect, you earn points for each session and can unlock additional functionality all while understanding the patterns of your brain activity.

This, I am sure, is just the initial rush of many brain readers that’ll be competing for our attention – or non-attention in the case of Muse. Oh, and a plastic hanger does NOT work as a Thinkable – in case you were thinking that.

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Posted by: psilva | September 17, 2014

Oh, Is That The Internet You’re Wearing?


I can see it now…

[Enter Dream Sequence] ‘ALOHA! We’re here at the Red Carpet Event at the 2021 Web Movie Awards! All the stars are here wearing the latest in fashion trends. Oh, here comes DigiTom wearing his underarm sweat blocker shirt that also calculates how much moisture he is losing and how many ounces of water he needs to replace that sweat. Cool stuff. Ah, and here comes Hank Hologram and what is amazing is how his shoes continue to change colors depending on his mood. Ooop…With all those screams, it must be super director Steve Streamer who has 500 little HHDD cameras sown into his clothes and he is making a live action movie of this event!’ Can’t wait to see who plays me!’

Wearables2 Wearables are one of the hottest trends pushing the Internet of Things. Many of us are familiar with the sensor bracelet things that keeps track of steps, distance, calories burned and all the things a pedometer used to do. But now there are sensors stitched in to our actual clothing! Nike recently patented a shirt that provides ‘enhanced body position feedback.’  Basically you are wearing your coach as an outfit. It is a wearable instruction shirt that helps improve an athlete’s form or body positioning.

A Korean artist has released a kinetic wearable, Metamorphosis, which features a woman’s dress and man’s blazer that detect when you’re drunk. When consuming alcohol, the shoulders on the dress expand and transition between different colors, while the collar on the blazer rise to hide the wearer’s face. The dress is designed to show how a female’s confidence increases when consuming alcohol but the blazer hides the male when it senses too much alcohol on his breath. I’m not incoxitated ossifer!

A Brazilian designer has won an award for her lingerie that illuminates when touched. While not yet in production, there are micro sensors built into the bras and underwear and brings the red light district into your own home.

And of you think these are one-offs, this October in Portland there will be FashioNXT’s first annual Wearable Technology Fashion Competition. They are looking at ways to bring wearables into mainstream adoption with the focus on ensuring the technology blends into the essence of the clothing.

To top it all off, there is an interesting article about the 5 psychological challenges facing wearables. It is about behavior change technology and if these apps can actually change what a person does. The 5 challenges include:

  • Apathy – if you’re not motivated to change, it doesn’t matter.
  • Simplicity vs. Complexity – You can’t just shove complex psychology into an app and expect an incredible user experience.
  • Personalization vs. Scale – Psychology is generally applied in a clinical setting, with the best results from 1:1 interactions & does not scale.
  • Relapse – The process of anticipating/preventing relapse is integral to lasting behavior change. This important step is almost always overlooked in technologies
  • Integration with Real Life – There exists a natural barrier between doing something on your phone and taking action in real life.

With 82% of American wearable tech users believing that it has enhanced their lives, I’m sure this is just the beginning of the Wearable Internet.

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