Sunday, 9 October 2011

Walking in the city- A Running Perspective

Walking in the city- A Running Perspective
Design Idea 1:
Runtec is a technology that uses blutooth technology and sensors to inform the user of oncoming runners and to share information about the runner. The technology is a wireless wrist device that works together with headphones that also act as regular headphones for music. The music fades when the sensors detect oncoming runners and immediately scans for sharing capacity. If you choose not to share during a run you can turn of the sharing capacity and set up a status that advises fellow runners of your reason for not sharing. The share option allows for the communication of detailed information about your age, weight, speed and running distance. However, the motivation key is the primary function and as a runner approaches the first information shared is the reason for running and the goals of the runner. Therefore, once the runner has approached they have the chance to motivate verbally or with a facial or hand gesture, this sharing of information also allows for the other runner to assess the degree of running compatibility.
If a runner chooses to experience a social interaction with other runners on a particular run, the interaction mode is selected and stats are shared with the runner. If interaction is accepted, a verbal communication can take place b y holding the wrist device to the mouth without stopping. Therefore, a stopping point can be planned which will not disrupt the run and potentially result in a running partnership that would achieve better results. The device encourages social interaction and acts as a personal motivator and communicator when there is no time to stop. The Garmin technology which is a device used by runners to record running trips and personal information is similar to Runtec in that ‘…data is collected via the GPS device and sent to the mini computer via Bluetooth. The computer then transmits this data wirelessly over the 3G network to a server’ (Garmin) . Casual runners John Montoya and Steve Butress both use the Garmin technology whilst running. However they both still lack in motivation so would therefore benefit from the additional social interaction features that Runtec offers.
Design Idea 2:
PedomoTec is similar to Runtec in terms of it’s information sharing capacity and oncoming runner sensor feature. It is a shoes technology that records footsteps that can later be accessed on the internet and shared with other runners. Whilst running, the shoes link to other runners that pass, therefore the technology allows for a transfer of information between runners who train in the same vicinity. The technology also acts as a pedometer and records speed and distance. Runners are able to go online and view other runners tracks and times to be motivated and inspired to try new routes and set harder paces. Also, the shape of the shoe is based on the concept of reflexology, applying pressure to particular points on the foot to achieve better performance.

1 comment:

  1. This is excellent! So the next step is to play with what this could be like - what would you hear? What information would runners choose to compose an audio identity? Is it like an answering machine message, or more subtle/complex - how to communicate your values, interests etc. with sound alone - what an amazing research question! Loads of potential for generating more interest from other researchers around the world… its a hot topic!


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