Clement Charles

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Archive for the ‘Quantified Self’ Category

October 14th, 2014 by Clement Charles


During my last QS session, I was thrilled with a great discussion we’ve had of how much tracking devices can expand your perception to reach a stage where sensors become nearly useless as your senses would have have been augmented  « organically ».

Think about time. Must of us had a watch when kids. A lot of us – even here in Switzerland – do not wear any. For me, like plenty of other it’s very very easy to tell, without watch or other kind of display what time it is, with a 15-30 precision. Nothing exceptional there. I would assume that before, the watch, before the ticking of the clock every hour, makind also kew how fast / how slow time was moving but that their « intimate organic precision » was not as precises than today. Men and women of the early US or the French revolution could easily say « it’s mid morning, not far from lunch »,, but not able to say « it must be between 10.30 and 11 am » as we easily can today. They could roughly say the time « more or less » two hours.
At the QS session, a fellow self trackers explained that, after 2 years of tracking steps daily with fitbit, he could say – with a 500 steps margin – how much steps he walked in his day. I’ve said many time that QS « makes the unseen visible », unlike lifelogging “with stores that your sense did feel ».
Based on Oliver’s take, yes, QS could make the unseen become visible, but it could also teach you to see it. Without devices. To improve (hack?) your brain into countings steps.
I’ve never been a believer of 10/90 theory regarding brain usage or brain capabilites. Why  ? BecauseI think we are the very early stage of understanding the brain, so instead of « 90% un-used », my take is « 90% not yet understood ».
Nevertheless, in such perspectives, I think we could consider some Quantified Self tracking practices as brain power expander, as a way to expand your senses and gain new one , where QS devices would the « small wheels » of your brain bicycle, teaching securely and progressively how to ride without those small wheels. Or how to track without the tracker.
To conclude, I want to relate this with the « wetware » pioneers that get magnet implants in their finger pulls, and thus, truly « senses » new feel, new vision, when they walk in the street.
We can all be super hero. We don’t even need to be Gamma ray exposed or GM-spider bitten. We just need to find the right tools to expand our brain. And the Quantified Self movement has plenty of those to propose. Well, I love QS just even more !  And ready for a new milestones in expanding human capabilities, organic transhumanism.
September 3rd, 2014 by Clement Charles

discover what’s in your blood

Capture d’écran 2014-09-02 à 20.21.45

Pre-registration are now open with upcoming blood testing company, based in Switzerland. I did met the founder, the product looks neat and great.  Insert your mail to kept in touch.

September 1st, 2014 by Clement Charles


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5 years ago, I looked crazy stupid naive when I mentioned the idea, that in the future (which is now), telco’s will be selling disconnection as much as connection, access restriction as much full access.

Similarly, when I spoke at ITU last year on data privacy in World Telecom in Bangkok, I mentioned the fact that selling privacy and secured data access, I remember people being really surprised in the audience. Then, later during the event, I was happy to see fellow future-thinker (Swiss too) Gerd Leonard mentioned the exact same concept when he addressed the crowd of operators and regulators telling them “telcos are in the trust business”. You can view the full keynote here.

Logically, in the space of personal data, especially with lifelogin and quantified self data, trust is not an option, it must should be a central piece of the product offering.  This is way I’ve loved the concept of Pryv from the very start, in the field of QS  meta platforms to aggregate your various data. Contained in the name (Pryv, as in private) , but also in their DNA (they’re Swiss, and as such love secrecy), their concept is really right and fair, proposed in a rich user interface.

Now to the business, I just discovered the business of Respect Networks, dubbed as “the leading platform for secure, verified and mutually agreed sharing of personal data”. This is just a start of new business, where people will pay for trust.

August 4th, 2014 by Clement Charles

vessyl let you know what you drink

The video is nice. The concept is fun. Tis said, I think this will be an expensive cup to loose or forget in the train. My favorite moment is 0:39 when the guy put beer from a can, look at the cup, the cup say “beer” and the guy nods, moved and impressed, by the quality of the insight provided ; ) Cheers.

July 7th, 2014 by Clement Charles


Just got that video from fellow self tracker, about the Happiness Blanket, a British Airways test product that monitors your happiness when you’re on board with BA, changing colour to reflect your mood. Check out the video below, made on the world famous, atlantic spine of the New York-London route.

If you ask me, I think the idea is quite fun and engaging for passenger. But, and it’s a big BUT, it ads lights to the plane, which is already a problem for sleeping confort.

Plus, the purpose/risk ratio: is showing BA staff and other fellow passenger your mood worth to bear a Bluetooth transmitter on your head for 7 to 10 hours ?

And last but not least, it’s BA, so from my personal experiences, there is a big chances that the blanket would (please select) a-not available b-broken c-very dirty d-combination of the above. Keep me posted if you try it ; )

June 24th, 2014 by Clement Charles


I was interviewed on Quantified Self, the future of health and the patient/doctor relationship. I am speaking mainly between minutes 10 and 18m.

June 18th, 2014 by Clement Charles

Breath Sensor Spire

Interesting video for the new breath sensors from Spire. Yet, only on pre order. Nice video, but looking forward to test the product and how the app is actually generating peace of mind (and not just an other layer of stressful notification and call to actions).

June 5th, 2014 by Clement Charles


The more I listen, the more I hear concerns about data ownership and control. Concerns, yes, but solutions, not much. All of it flavored by pessimism – as if the current abuse were here to stay.

Well I don’t think so.

Fist of all, I am sure, and I’ve said publicly in event like ITU Telecom World 2013, that today, a good privacy and data protection are like the icing on the cake, but that they may become the cake itself in the soon to come future. Indeed, I think that in 10 years from now, to create a real data economy where growth is possible, privacy will be part of the game, as much as letting users control the usage of their data.

Secondly, the logic, the technical paradigm to reach that goal is already public today. One of the greatest initiative to protect personal data, in my view, is the IDCUBED project from the MIT , headed by John Henry Clippinger. I had the pleasure to meet John at ITU Telecom World 2012, in Dubai, in a session on privacy. On that day, and in our lunch that followed, I discovered their idea of a “data mark up language” that would encapsulate all types of possible usages of the data produced.

In my view, based on that idea from the MIT, each data should have its own meta-mark up information, like the EXIFF files in a photo or the XML files in a web content.

It should answer the following question, from the biggest to the smallest:

1 / Do you allow your data to be share ? Yes. No. If no, end of the question.

2 / If yes, would you like this data to be share with

– scientific organizations that would use your data anonimmized for research purpose
– a specific person (please list as many, please use group or “circles” that you’ve already curated)
– all or part of yours contacts (from one or more database of personal contact, from address books to Facebook friends)
– commercial organization that may uses your data commercially (and possibly, pay you a share of the revenues)


What do you think ? What rights would you give to who ? Let’s chat .



March 4th, 2014 by Clement Charles

Back on ITU World 2012

Invited as speakers in the “Who Owns My Data” session in Dubai in 2012, I had the opportunity to share (… and scare) with my vision of the digital immortality. I also met and discovered MIT professors John Clippinger, founder and Executive Director, Idcubed, that made understand how we may control and monetize our flows of data.

As we I am already preparing possible participation in Doha 2014 after my successful panel and meet the experts session in Bangkok last November, I wanted to go back on that session in Dubai which was greatly quoted. You can view a great report here, and view the session in full simple with a easy free login with your mail.

January 30th, 2014 by Clement Charles

The QS GVA Meet Up – Happy 2014


Back on blogging after two intense months of 200% work. I hope you are all fine and the holidays were good. Happy New Year. 2014 will be a great year, glad to be looking for it !

We also back on track with the Quantified Self Meet Up in Geneva. The first 2014 Meet Up – the 10th in total – will be held in the nice cowering / digital culture space of La Muse ! As for the program, we plan a short but dense meet up.

As you know, QS, as all new technologies and society changer, has one step in the present and an other in the future. Our next meet up will provide the same perspective with some really immediately relevant and useful content, as well as some more futuristic forward thinking to fuel your imagination.

Bruno Chanel, a digital strategist and Evernote ambassador in CH, will present a graphic compilation demonstrating links and correlation between various sets of his personal data, collected with Withings (weight, BMI), Evernote Foods (meals) and Jawbone UP (steps, sleeps).  A first time disclosure of all this very, very personal data.

More info:

Clement Charles, digital media pioneer, promoter of awareness of both Quantified Self and data privacy, will share a “down the line vision” of the digital immortality, or how connected mankind could stays around for centuries by using life long collected data to create digital copies of themselves.

More info:


This meet up will televised !

At the RTS is currently doing a report about QS for health, they are inviting us to have the meet up in the highest tower of the city, with an exceptional view on the city. They will be filming the meet up as part of their report, but no presentation or personal data will be recorded.

There is no bar service, so please feel free to bring some drinks along.

Event is free – please do subscribe via MeetUp to ease planning: Quantified Self Geneva (Genève) – Meetup


November 13th, 2013 by Clement Charles

please meet the ultimate sensor


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I just discovered the SENSORDRONE, a fantastic plateform for so many sensors and unlimited amounts of apps. I am going to order one right now. Check the video below, I am sure you will do the same ; )


November 8th, 2013 by Clement Charles

A platform to group all your datas

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Discover Tent ( a new platform to group all your datas. An important initiative, necessary for all. Looking forward to see what it will be looking like.

November 6th, 2013 by Clement Charles

Airo – the latest wrist tracker in the pipe

Great video for Airo. A product expected… in fall 2014 ! The new and smart idea? the food spectrometer. Looking forward to test that.

September 13th, 2013 by Clement Charles

Review on Shine, Alive Cor ECG, BAC Track breathalyzer and Hyetis’ Crossbow smart watch

Last Wed, we had a small intimate QS Meet Up event, mainly focused on exchanges and new products. Please find a summary of our discussion below.

New devices by Laurent Eymard

We start with some discussion on the latest iPhone announcement. Not focusing on the possible loss of fingers web your phone get stolen and the new data to resell / illegally reproved that we will now be able to give the Apple and others accessing their infrastructures, we mainly talk about the M7 processor. Indeed, this iPhone 5S comes with a processor, called M7 or Motion Processor, dedicated processor to capture moves and manage the accelerometer, which would lead to a lot of autonomy and a lot more battery life, as all data associated with movement will be manage by this new chip and not the general CPU of the computer. Also, the phone is presented as twice as fast that the previous models. To test and validate.

We had to pleasure to welcome Laurent from , always testing the latest gear and devices for its online community. Laurent delivered its test results of three product that we then discussed.

Shine – It does surely shine, but it is not as bright as expected

Based on a crowd funded project, Shine is a motion tracker  from misfit wearable. It’s USP is to be quite classy and elegant, and with 4 month of battery life. Indeed, it has been thought to be nice and classy from the start. All covers and in aluminum, and not plastic, and the device is fully waterproof (until 10bar – quite a margin to swiss daily).
You need to touch it twice to activate. You can see progress to reach the setted goads with led scales. If you click three times, you see the time too ; )

Goal are set in points, translated into activities. 800 points is one hour of walk, 30 min of running or 20min swimming. Compared to other trackers, on average, you get 10% less steps measured that with FitBit.

To set it up, set goals or indicate your current activity, you are supposed to place it on iOS devices and it’s detected. But it works also next to it as it’s bluetooth 4.0 enabled. You need to choose the activity before you sync, and then it will track this specific activity. You will activate the trackers by tapping three times, but the activity itself has been selected from the iOS device. Strange, and not very smart, and definitely not convenient. Yes, it tracks more things that Jawbone but it’s really not effort less.

Laurent also mentioned that app detect the language device and you cannot change the language – which is annoying.
A good thing is the easy feedbacks function within the apps, and even more, the quick feedbacks that you will get from Shine as well as a kind and good support form the staff.

As said, battery should last at least 4 month with Lithium battery. The great option, you forget about it for a long time.

Currently on sales for 120 USD in USA in Apple Store in exclusivity. We can get elsewhere if did you finance the crowd funding campaign. Now, only iOS UI, no web or desktop interfaces, but surely in planning.

More info: an appropriate section on red dolphin (link). 


Alive Cor is a shell / cover for iPhone that measure your heart beat.
Laurent tested it with professional medical partners that said that quality of signal measures was great, and with “a clean trace and graph”.
Once you use the AliveECG, you can measure the heart beat, can change your scale of vision and export results in PDF and more.

The tech concept is interesting. Indeed, to track, you put your hands on the sensors, as on a fitness machine, the device creates a unique sound that you do not hear, based on your heart beat, and then the iOS device capture the sound and measure the heart beat. The interface is impressive and results seems usable.
Check the video

It can be used by doctor to draft quick diagnostic. It could really be useful for people with weak heart condition, such as arrhythmia. It only measures, and provide no diagnosis, only data… as a classic ECG in hospital that needs doctors to “read” it for interpretation. It could provide diagnosis based on standard data models but I think such diagnosis would be a really heavy responsibility, even with all the possible disclaimers.
It cost circa 150 USD, now sold only in US and UK. Not really “authorized” in Europe, hard to understand why.

Other provider of similar devices right now and in the pipe, such as OmSignal or Citizen Science.

BAC Track – 

The BAC stands for Breath Alcohol Content.  This mobile tracker is meant to measure the level of alcohol in your breath. The company behind it also provides a bigger more precise version that is used by US police, so they are really a credible player in the market, not just an other gadget maker.

The devices is impressively precise. And quite funny to use. (show some print screen). In case you did know you were drunk, it tells your level of alcohol and the time to reach sobriety (=zero alcohol). The great thing to have in parties – in my perspective, more as fun than prevention devices. Still, I did not find (yet) a video while searching for Bac Track Contest or similar search ; )


Yetis – CrossBow

Last but not least, Laurent spoke the CrossBow from Swiss company Hyetis that intends to build the ultimate Swiss watch !! It really has impressive functions, like a combination of a smart watch and a James Bond tools. It needs to be charged daily by induction. It now on pre-order at 1200 USD (which is not so expensive for a Swiss watch) and really looks like a first of its kind. Check the site, it’s worth it. On a personal level, I always thought that Quantified Self and self-tracking are a part of the future of the watch industry, especially for low / mid budget watch that are not fully mechanic.


More Quantified Self information 

Sad to have missed it all ? Us too, we’d like to see you there.

No worries, join our group on Meet Up and we will be happy to meet you at the next Quantified Self Geneva.

September 4th, 2013 by Clement Charles

Getting ready for ITU Telecom World 2013

ITU Telecom World has always been an important miles stones in my life, both as a doer and thinker.

Following last year kind invite, I accepted to participate  to this year event and speak in a few conf and panels.

A very hot topic and interesting would be :  “How can World Citizens Ensure their Privacy in a Digital World?” at

We will be covering questions like-

– What should citizens do and what are their rights?-

– What should be the role of Government and Business?-

– How should we ensure this in laws and international standards?


Any inputs you reader would like to provide ? Feel free to post a comment and chat with me on Twitter.

August 30th, 2013 by Clement Charles

4K Ultra hd video is just the beginning

If you think that HD is the fist step of the stairway, you will love this video from tech company NeoLune. 
Get ready for the endless zoom !

June 12th, 2013 by Clement Charles

QS GVA June 13 – Session review

For our June event of QS GVA, we had a great meet up last night at the Green Café last night in GVA. Around 10 self trackers attended the meet up. We were pleased to welcome newcomer like Melody, Thomas, Malek, Felipe, and to catch up with regulars like Marcello, Laurent, José, Kat and my self.

After a first order of drinks, we briefly spoke about the QS EU 13 event in Amsterdam. Marek and I both attended and had a great time. Marek shared in experiences of having offices hours to present his app and meeting this the community, when I mention is new understanding of the motivation of trackers and briefly reported on the digital immortality break out session. We briefly announced the upcoming global QS conf in October.

Marek made the first presentation of the night, presenting QS iOS Apps Systematic, that let’s you tracks habits and things to do in ways that can help you achieve your goals. It’s a nice and elegant app, and the team has a lot idea to make it even better and extend its reach (Android apps, Google Glasses). The app is on sales on the app store for a while and you can look at the slides here or visit the app’s site. You can also view the slides below.

The second presentation was a device test and review by Marcello. He acquired the OnDaily tracker from Decathlon and tested rather extensively over a few days / weeks. Compared to the price, really low at 44 €, Marcello had a rather “good and fun” experiences, despite all the defaults of the product that he mention: 1min delay before tracking, weak sync between desktop and web app, poor content on the site and really cheap user interface.

The group then spent some time speaking about this user interface not knowing if it was purposely on beta or looking ugly not to compete with other more high end product sold the sport goods distributor, or if there was a really a problem in hiring UI and graphic designer for that project. I’ve made a similar review on my blog about the trackers and got an answer as comment from the product manager that explained they were working on the issues and that a new firmware should be released soon. The whole QS GVA is looking forward to re test it all once the new firmware would be provided.

After some Q&A with the speakers, we exchanged about the last tracking tools available, and agreed on the increasing trends of “stylish”, even “jewelry” like QS tracking devices. We also spoke about user interface, memoto life logging camera and beddit sleep trackers.

We wrapped up at 9.30 PM and a large part of the group stayed to enjoy a nice healthy asian dinner at the Green Café. Next events will be in fall, after the summer break. All the best until then.

If you did join our Quantified Self Geneva group on meet up, please jump on board.



Slides from Systematic.

June 10th, 2013 by Clement Charles

Full set of personal data on sales, with Frederico Zannier

I had a lot of pleasures of following Frederico Zannier project to sell its own data. He sucessfully closed this week end a first round of 2 733 USD of people that will pay to get part or whole of his data.


On making money with data, Frederico has this great quote

” In 2012, advertising revenue in the United States was around $30 billion. That same year, I made exactly $0 from my own data. But what if I tracked everything myself? Could I at least make a couple bucks back?”

This is just the start of citizens starting to take control of their own data. Get ready !

May 29th, 2013 by Clement Charles

The 2013 Quantified Self Europe Conference Roundup

If you missed the big moment of European Quantified Self movement, you will surely enjoy the round up on the global QS Blog. You will see many different post, covering a large amount of topics and points of view, on Quantified Self in general, as well as on this great QS EU 13 conferences we’ve enjoyed so much.

You can access the full review with this link: The 2013 Quantified Self Europe Conference RoundupQuantified Self. You’ll also be able to view some videos, interviews and captures of conference and a great  Flicker album.

If you are looking for my post, my reports and feelings on the event, please use the following links:

A general piece:
A piece about the breakout session we’ve had: 
Some smaller, more targeted posts:



May 18th, 2013 by Clement Charles

Memoto at Quantified Self Europe 2013 | Memoto Blog

A great overview of what happen last week at QS Europe Conference in A’Dam. From MEMOTO, one of the most promising wearable life logging tool, that had a huge (and deserved) success on kickstarter.
Check the article there:

Memoto at Quantified Self Europe 2013 | Memoto Blog.

Aslo, a big thanks to Niklas for his mention of my breakout on digital immortality. I am glad he like the session and enjoyed with the final poetic statement “Especially with all the self-tracking we’re getting into, what we do in life echoes in eternity.” Agreed !!! If you wanna start echoing in pictures right now, pre orders are still open for memoto cams ; )