Archive for August, 2011

Send motion, temperature and heart data to the Cloud through the CloudSensorSock

Thursday, August 25th, 2011

Mobile pervasive healthcare technologies can support a wide range of applications and services including patient monitoring and emergency response. At the same time they introduce several challenges, like data storage and management, interoperability and availability of heterogeneous resources, unified and ubiquitous access issues. One potential solution for addressing all aforementioned issues is the introduction of Cloud Computing concept.

Within this context we have developed and present the “CloudSensorSock”, a wearable – textile platform based on open hardware and software that collects motion and heartbeat data and stores them wirelessly on an open Cloud infrastructure for monitoring and further processing.

Watch the video for more information after the break.


The Tacit Project: An Arduino-based sonar feedback device for the blind

Saturday, August 20th, 2011

Steve Hoefer from Grathio Labs has developed the Tacit project, basically an assistance device for sonar obstacle avoidance with haptic feedback. The device can measure the distance to objects and translate that into pressure on the wrist. It is based on our favorite Arduino Mini Pro.

According to Steve, it’s wrist mounted and senses objects from about 1 inch (2 cm) to 10 feet (3.5m).  It has generally fast response time (fractions of a second) to quickly navigate complex environments. It’s designed to help a vision impaired person to navigate complex environments.  Mounted to the back of the hand, the force feedback means it doesn’t interfere with other assistance devices that mount elsewhere and use audio feedback cues.

Steve shares in his post all the information on how to build it (parts and schematics) and the Arduino code as well. Great work and beautiful design Steve!

Check also the video for a short live demo of the prototype:


Supporting Medical Stuff during CPR of Infants using Arduino

Friday, August 12th, 2011

Recently I dropped on the paper entitled “Rhythm of Life Aid (ROLA): An Integrated Sensor System for Supporting Medical Staff During Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) of Newborn Infants” in IEEE TITB Journal.

Authors present a system that utilizes various sensors and provides audiovisual feedback to physicians for exercising the  Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) on newborn infants.







CRP is a crucial medical procedure for the survival of a newborn infant when complications, such as asphyxia or severe infection leading to cessation of breathing and decrease of the heart rate, exist.

On one hand, improper chest compressions could cause internal injury to patients, such as rib fractures, punctured lungs, and damage to the heart, liver, or spleen. On the other hand, insufficient compression depth can be caused by too soft compressions. Therefore, instructions and trainings on CPR for both adults and children are necessary.

The system consists of  a timing circuit with two buzzers for the compression–ventilation “beeps.” The visual feedback loop contains an FSR sensor as input and EL-foil actuator as a visual output of the chest compression pressure. The heart of the prototype is an Arduino Mini that receives all the sensor feedback and forwards it to a PC for data logging and also performs audiovisual generation.






A prototype ROLA device is built, consisting of a transparent foil integrated with pressure sensor and electroluminescent foil actuators for indication of the exerted chest compression pressure, as well as an audio box to generate distinctive sounds as audio guidance for insufflations and compressions.











Testing results have shown that the use of ROLA device leads to a more constant rhythm and pressure of chest compressions during CPR of newborn infants!

Sleep disorder monitoring using the Arduino

Wednesday, August 10th, 2011

A nice idea for DIY monitoring of sleep disorders is presented here. The developer wanted to collect data on a suspected sleeping disorder, so he needed to record his heart rate and movement throughout the night. He borrowed an ear clip pulse sensor from a stationary exercise bike and interfaced it with an Arduino using a simple circuit which normalizes the photo-transistor’s output voltage and amplifies fluctuations. The Arduino senses rises and falls in voltage on one of its analog inputs and counts them as heartbeats. Motion is sensed with a crudely built vibrations sensor attached to the bed. It consists of a coiled thin wire pendulum which makes intermittent contact with a loop shaped electrode during vibrations. It is wired to the Arduino just like a button.

A major component of this project is a salvaged alphanumeric LCD from a defective answering machine with caller ID. The screen’s controller is a hd44780 equivalent, but the glass itself has many custom elements. Above the standard two lines with 15 characters each, there are over 80 individually addressable segments/elements. Most are arranged in 7 segment groups to produce digits. They behave like the exploded pixels of what would have been three normal characters.

The schematic from which the circuit built was based is the following:

The video presents the platform and many build details as well:

The video cannot be shown at the moment. Please try again later.

Update on the Pulse Sensor

Wednesday, August 10th, 2011

Guys from the upcoming Pulse Sensor project have provided to one of their students a prototype sensor for evaluation. He has made a nice video showing the sensor in action:

Can’t wait to receive one of the first production units and review it here! :-)

Arduino heart rate data logger

Sunday, August 7th, 2011

Another project implementation and tutorial that describes  assembly, programming and use of a device that constantly monitors heart rate and stores the data on an SD memory card. Quite useful when one needs to constant monitor heart rate and there are no options for wireless transmission of data via radio links or a mobile phone (increases cost complexity and power consumption).

As one can see, the logger utilizes the Polar Heart rate module (little dark cube particle on the right of the board).

Part lists:

 Parts list

Build, code instructions and results here.

The Anatomy of The DIY Heart Rate Monitor

Friday, August 5th, 2011

Joel Murphy and Yury Gitman from the Pulse Sensor project (also covered here) have just released basic instructions on how the ‘ve build their IR pulse sensor!


The information covers the fundamentals of the Infrared pulse sensing and basic instructions and hardware for building a prototype as the one illustrated above.

We are looking forward for more info about the tiny pulse sensor that the guys have built!

More details here.

Pill reminder with Arduino

Thursday, August 4th, 2011

Ryan Blace wanted a solution which would remind him to take his pills and require zero effort. So he managed to build his own Pill reminder, a small project that holds two bottles in a fairly nice looking box and flashes red until you take the pill. The act of picking up the bottle (the pill ingestion is assumed) is the entire interface.


The build itself is fairly straight forward with the following parts:

  • 2 picture frames from
  • Prototino (Arduino clone, first prototype was built with Uno)
  • 5 LEDs
  • 2 photoresistors
  • 7 resistors (current limiting for LEDs and for the sensor voltage divider)
  • 1 2.1mm barrel jack
He wrote the code with three states in mind.

  1. Not time to take a pill (nothing flashing).
  2. Time to take a pill, bottle present (red notify LED flashing, sensor LED is on)
  3. Time to take a pill, bottle missing (red notify LED solid, other notify LED off, sensor LED on)
More information, code and build instructions here.