Logo: University of Southern California

KNOWME Project Wins Body Computing Slam Contest

Collaborators included Urbashi Mitra, Shri Narayanan, Murali Annavaram, Gaurav Sukhatme and Nenad Medvidovic
Eric Mankin & Jon Nalick
November 02, 2009 —

"Body Computing" refers to wireless devices connected (implanted/external) to a human subject, which monitor and transmit up-to-the-second physiologic data to patients, physicians, and caregivers.

Body Computing Conference on the topic took place at USC in October 2009, and a home team, the  KNOWME Project, took top "Slam" honors at the gathering.

Members of the team include Urbashi Mitra, Shri Narayanan and Murali Annavaram from the Ming Hsieh Department of Electrical Engineering; Gaurav Sukhatme and Nenad Medvidovic from the Department of Computer Science; and Donna Spruijt-Metz from the Keck School of Medicine.  Three Ming Hsieh EE Ph.D. students contributed to the project: Gautam Thatte, Ming Li, Sangwon Lee, and Viktor Rozgic. 

Bodycomputing-logo 2009KNOWME addresses pediatric obesity issues by integrating body sensors for measuring physiological activity with mobile phones to provide on-body computing power to efficiently and accurately measure user activity. It aims to encourage physical activity and better health habits among particularly minority youth.

It uses wireless, wearable body sensors to measure physiological activity, food intake, stress levels, heart rate and other indicators.

The device is to be tailored to the individual and “pings” the person whenever he or she was sedentary for too long. It "provides a glimpse of the future where technology will enhance medicine and provide unprecedented views of the human body condition in real time," according to the team statement.

The Body Computing Slam is a competition at which teams make short presentations and demonstrations of the latest medical diagnostic and intervention technology.  The audience includes other research teams, venture capitalists, and medical device developers.  A professional judging panel comments on each entry, and the audience votes for what they consider is the technology with the best potential for dramatically changing healthcare. 

The KNOWME platform was selected as the winner for combining energy efficiency, state detection accuracy and design robustness for in-field use.