Music and sound have the power to influence the way you move. Dancing is an obvious example, so are scary sounds that make you startle and music to help your mind and body relax. They can invoke emotions that make you feel good, and possibly move well. In this project, now funded by Vitality Living Lab, we explore methodically how music and sound can improve people’s movements so they can become healthier.
The specific goal of the project is to develop an innovative solution to help prevent injuries for novice runners. By using meaningful auditive feedback in the form of sonification of footsteps and manipulation of music playlists, runners are provided with a system that functions as a personalized trainer. A runner listens to music while sensors are measuring movement. These measurements are analyzed and translated into running quality metrics, which in turn determine the music for the runner. Since everyone responds to music differently, and each runner’s body is different, machine learning is used for personal profiling. Technology, body and mind are used in a feedback loop system that adapts to and influences the runner in real-time.
Such a human-machine hybrid system that works on the subconscious level creates technological challenges and elicit new questions about the role of the integrated human component. In this talk we will elaborate on these challenges. What are the limits of mobile technology? How can good running be defined? What musical parameters can be used? How to incorporate emotion?