Some apps track what you've done

Monday , October 21, 2013 - 12:56 PM

Annie Flaherty

WASHINGTON — Ever suspect you do more housework than your spouse? Or that certain tasks at work raise your blood pressure? Maybe you wonder why you’re sneezing more lately, or if carbs are really what is making you tired after lunch?

Turns out, there’s an app or gadget to test all of that.

Advancements in wearable body sensors, mobile applications and other gadgets mean that nearly everything we do can be captured, logged and analyzed. And every day consumers are jumping at the chance to conduct their own experiments — tracking sleep, caffeine intake, kids’ studying habits, household chores, even whether a baby is nursing more frequently on Mom’s left breast versus her right.

“I don’t know if I’d use the word ‘obsessed,’ ” said Ernesto Ramirez, a self-tracking devotee who helped to organize a two-day conference on the subject recently in San Francisco. Speakers at past “Quantified Self” conferences have included a man who developed his own app to see if he could walk every street in Manhattan and a dad who used trackers on his kids to monitor chores.

“I think there’s an overall trend toward curiosity and proving knowledge of one’s self in the world,” Ramirez said.

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