Mindfulness Monitor pt 2

This series of posts will be documenting the development of Group 17’s (Evan Oskierko-Jeznacki, Christina Kim, Jiaang Hu) final project for ESE 519 Real-time Embedded Systems. Advisor: Dr. Nalaka S. Gooneratne, M.D., M.Sc.

Mindfulness Monitor Development Methodology

  • Establish clinically established baselines for heart and respiratory rates based on demographic inputs/previously collected data
  • Determine the relevant sensitivity and frequency/sampling rate required for each input variable
    Acquire and calibrate physiological input sensors to known standardized baselines (60 second period)
  • Develop a model to process and integrate the input signals and correlate to stages of mediation (will be getting table from Dr. Nalaka)
  • Develop a real-time process to provide negative feedback to the wearer to return the wearer to baseline via cues
  • Develop interface to both visualize and record the data stream or change settings

Mindfulness Monitor Preliminary System Schematic

As mentioned in the last post, our system involves a closed loop, negative feedback system. That is, the system collects the requisite physiologic signals from the wearer (heart rate, respiratory rate, hand/head movement), determines the wearer’s current state of mindfulness and produces a stimulus to help regulate or maintain that state, as necessary. For example, if the wearer is in a state of stress or anxiety with an elevated heart and respiratory rate, as well as elevated hand movement (fidgeting indicating anxiety), then the system will identify this discrepancy to a clinical baseline and begin to produce a haptic pulse via a wrist/hand-worm device to continually guide the wearer to slow their breathing and consequently heart rate. Our “reach goal” is to also incorporate a visual headset to produce visual feedback as well. The idea here would be to use a combination of modulating color temperature and brightness to aid in the feedback process. Wenjie Wei, a researcher who focuses on this area of study at Penn, has agreed to also advise on this process. Color temperature, brightness, and the time it takes to change or modulate these variables can all be used to induce or guide cognitive behavior. A later post will cover this in more depth.

Each of us on the team will take on one portion of the project with help from one other person on the team. Christina will lead the team in developing and testing the analog portion of the system, primarily the ECG amplification circuit and the sensor peripherals. I will help her test and troubleshoot the system. I will lead the feedback portion of the system, focusing on the haptic and visual feedback programming and design, also aided by Christina. Jiaang will lead the real-time processing aspect, and developing a system to interpret and analyze the digital signals from the monitoring device which will feed into the feedback portion of the system.


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