Inspiration

While both mood tracking and awareness of breath/pulse have proven to be helpful assets for living with mental illness, it's easier said than done. As mental illness often makes its sufferers less aware of their surroundings, the requirement of being even more aware in order to record your mood and vital signs can seem like an oxymoron. While apps like FitBit have approached this problem from a fitness perspective with much success, there has yet to be an equally helpful product that focuses on vital data in correlation with mental health. A few companies, such as Spire and VINAYA have attempted to fill this gap, but their attempts are lacking in functionality and/or ease of use. We hope that our product, Renew, can help to open doors for more apps and products that focus on improving mental health.

What it does

The Renew bracelet collects heart rate and movement data and sends it to a smartphone paired by bluetooth. The app analyzes this data though a machine learning algorithm to determine breath rate from respiratory sinus arrhythmia (fluctuations of the pulse due to breathing). Breath and heart rate data are combined to predict potential anxiety attacks, alerting the user in real time and offering breathing exercises. Long term data is collected and stored for review.

How I built it

The Android app is built in Java and XML, while the website was built using SquareSpace.

Challenges I ran into

There was neither enough time nor team members to work on the bracelet or aggregating, analyzing, or visualizing the data.

Accomplishments that I'm proud of

We took our product from a pipe dream to the beginnings of a functioning product in 24 hours. Further, we built an aesthetically pleasing website and app presenting our product in a user-friendly way, and created a plan to implement unfinished features.

What I learned

We learned a lot of Android app development as we had very little prior experience with the program, as well as (cheesy as it may sound) the importance and value of collaboration across academic fields. As one of us studies creative writing/theatre and the other studies comp sci/economics, it was interesting to see what we were able to accomplish together.

What's next for HampHack2017

Building the bracelet, adding communication between the bracelet and the app, and implementing the data analysis and visualization.

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