Dezeen spoke with designer Ivor Williams about his Uji clock which displays your heartbeat in real time.
Designer Ivor Williams has created a clock that displays your heartbeat instead of the time (+ interview + movie).
The clock, called Uji, uses a wearable ECG sensor to record the electric activity of the heart. This information is sent wirelessly to the clock, which moves its hands backwards and forwards in time with the pulse.
Williams says the project aims to raise questions about the way wearable devices are increasingly be used to harvest “quantified self” data from individuals.
“Uji uses the same technology as wearable devices to detect the heartbeat but it doesn’t use it in a very quantifiable way,” Williams told Dezeen. “It uses it in a very abstract way.”
Williams created the clock with Fabrica researchers interaction designer Jonathan Chomko and product designer Federico Floriani.
The clock is made from a single piece of handmade ceramic features two thin, black hands positioned at midnight. Instead of telling the time, the hands flicker backwards and forwards.
The “quantified self” movement, which began in California in 2007, focuses on finding ways to use technology to collect biometric data, such as measuring blood oxygen levels or tracking insulin or cortisol levels, with the aim of medical self-advancement.
“It’s like the holy grail of technology, this wearable technology with this quantified self. It’s like data driven enlightenment, the idea that you can know yourself,” said Williams. “If we can measure all our vital signs, what’s the value in that?”
He added: “One of the nice things about the clock is that is doesn’t quantify, it doesn’t hold,” Williams explained. “It doesn’t give you any information about whether you have a healthy or an unhealthy heartbeat. It’s not the answer but it’s one way of looking at how technology can be used to do something else.”
Read the full interview here.
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