nike air max 90 vt baratas Nike FuelBand Tracks Physical Activity Inconsistently
EARLIER this month, I found myself obsessing over a digital pet as demanding as the Tamagotchi toys I collected as a child. Those virtual creatures lived on the screens of egg shaped key chains and needed constant feeding and petting, which was accomplished with the press of a button.
My latest fixation wasn’t an ersatz animal. It was the , a slim, black bracelet that has the mission of tracking the daily physical activity of anyone who wears it.
From the moment I wrapped the band around my wrist, I was enamored with the idea of a device that could help me collect data about my habits and behavior, so that I could try to improve them. The only trouble was that the device didn’t seem to work very well.
The FuelBand, which awards virtual points for various forms of exercise, doled out rewards with little apparent rationale. One lazy Sunday, I lounged around my apartment with my iPad and an endless pot of coffee, barely moving. But the band delivered a cheery message: I’d hit my goal for the day. Huh?
Joseph Teegardin, a Nike spokesman, said last week that the company assigned points to a range of behaviors. To tally those points, the accelerometers in the wristband monitor activity and match movement patterns to a Nike proprietary index. He added that the device worked best with activities involving wrist movement dancing and basketball, for example.
The device’s inconsistency was frustrating. After a few days, though, I forgot about my newfound pet altogether, leaving it in a public restroom and then, after retrieving it, putting it in my back pocket and later accidentally sitting on it. Until then, the wristband had certainly been affecting my behavior. I felt Fuelshamed, embarrassed each time I glanced at the band’s dull surface and found it illuminated by a lonely red dot, a signal that I wasn’t active enough to appease the machine.
The FuelBand is part of a new, ambitious breed of fitness tracking devices and apps that promise to transform their owners into personal data collectors, able to analyze and improve the minutiae of their daily lives where they go, what they eat and how much they move.
These gadgets and software have attracted legions of fans who want to know how far they run on a jog or how many calories they burn on their way to work. The FuelBand, however, is trying to move into new territory by creating its own index for awarding points, called NikeFuel, based on a variety of activities and then calculating a daily total. It’s meant to give its users a generic goal, but it can also lead to confusion, given the ambiguity of the metrics.
THE forgetfulness and guilt I experienced as my FuelBand honeymoon wore off is not uncommon, according to people who study behavioral science. The collected data is often interesting, but it is hard to analyze and use in a way that spurs change.
“It doesn’t trigger you to do anything habitually,” said Michael Kim, who runs Kairos Labs, a Seattle based company specializing in designing social software to influence behavior. “Habits are based on cues that happen every day, which leads to a routine and then a reward or achievement, which could just be something as general as an endorphin rush.”
Of the FuelBand, he said, “You just see a pretty number that isn’t always enough to be a trigger.” The FuelBand connects with smartphones and a Web based interface, which shows users a cute animation of a dancing alien as a reward for reaching a goal. But Mr. Kim, whose résumé includes a stint as director of Xbox Live, the online gaming system created by Microsoft, said the gamelike mechanisms of the Nike device and others like it were “not enough” for the average user. “Points and badges do not lead to behavior change,” he said.
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But Mr. Fogg said he believed that the FuelBand might be useful in another way. Simply donning it can work as a fancier version of a string tied around your finger: a reminder to complete a task or errand, he said. It could be the nudge you need, for example, to get off the subway a few stops early and walk the rest of the way home, or to jog a few extra laps around the track.
“You aren’t going to be any less active than you already are by wearing it,” he said.
But its benefits, such as they are, may not be sustainable. “The biggest problem people have is losing the device,” Mr. Fogg said with a laugh. “Is it reasonable to expect someone to wear it every day for the rest of their life?”
It isn’t for me. My once beloved FuelBand now lives on a crowded dresser, surrounded by jewelry I’ve grown tired of wearing.
Of course, these monitoring devices could be miniaturized further, and could develop more impressive capabilities. Steven Dean, who organizes gatherings in New York for self trackers people who collect data about everything from their caffeine intake to their number of smiles said we were in the early stages of information gathering and analysis. He compared it to documenting a rash on his skin, photographing it and keeping a record of its response to various allergy creams.
“I may not know what to make of the information I’ve collected, but at least I have it,” Mr. Dean said. “I could show the dermatologist what I looked like two weeks ago rather than guess.”
EVENTUALLY, wearable devices will help people understand more of their bodies’ behaviors and find ways to tweak them. Already, personal data streams can be exported to smartphones or computers for use in digital weight scales and heart and blood sugar monitors. Future devices could nudge their owners in real time, letting them know if they were near a gym and hadn’t worked out in a few days. Or they could warn diabetes patients to stay away from ice cream shops.
“This is just the start in terms of pure data capture,” Mr. Dean said.
Correction: August 5, 2012
The Bits column last Sunday about the Nike FuelBand, a bracelet that tracks physical activity, referred incorrectly to research by B. J. Fogg, who directs the Technology Lab at Stanford. Although he has conducted research tests on forms of wearable technology, he has not done so with the FuelBand.