Perhaps the largest annual event related to mHealth is the mHealth Summit, held near Washington DC. Today, the summit kicked off with a Privacy & Security Symposium, including a presentation by David Kotz on Developing a Secure mHealth Platform for Wearables, in which he described the Amulet project. The talk presented the Amulet approach to providing a wearable hub for body-area mHealth applications, and our latest hardware and software prototypes. The talk generated a lot of interesting questions from the audience of about 60-70 people.
More news once we publish our new paper describing Amulet – hopefully within the next six months.
I’m pleased to share a new paper that we’ll be presenting next month at the Workshop on Mobile Medical Applications – Design and Development (WMMADD) at SenSys in Memphis.
Abstract: Interest in using mobile technologies for health-related applications (mHealth) has increased. However, none of the available mobile platforms provide the essential properties that are needed by these applications. An mHealth platform must be (i) secure; (ii) provide high availability; and (iii) allow for the deployment of multiple third-party mHealth applications that share access to an individual’s devices and data. Smartphones may not be able to provide property (ii) because there are activities and situations in which an individual may not be able to carry them (e.g., while in a contact sport). A low-power wearable device can provide higher availability, remaining attached to the user during most activities. Furthermore, some mHealth applications require integrating multiple on-body or near-body devices, some owned by a single individual, but others shared with multiple individuals. In this paper, we propose a secure system architecture for a low-power bracelet that can run multiple applications and manage access to shared resources in a body-area mHealth network. The wearer can install a personalized mix of third-party applications to support the monitoring of multiple medical conditions or wellness goals, with strong security safeguards. Our preliminary implementation and evaluation supports the hypothesis that our approach allows for the implementation of a resource monitor on far less power than would be consumed by a mobile device running Linux or Android. Our preliminary experiments demonstrate that our secure architecture would enable applications to run for several weeks on a small wearable device without recharging.
Andrés Molina-Markham, Ronald Peterson, Joseph Skinner, Tianlong Yun, Bhargav Golla, Kevin Freeman, Travis Peters, Jacob Sorber, Ryan Halter, David Kotz. Amulet: A secure architecture for mHealth applications for low-power wearable devices. In Proceedings of the Workshop on Mobile Medical Applications – Design and Development (WMMADD), November 2014. [PDF]
A large portion of the Dartmouth & Clemson teams gathered on the Dartmouth campus today for an intense research retreat. We kicked off the event yesterday with a paddle on the scenic Connecticut River, alongside campus.
Canoeing on the Connecticut River
The Amulet Project inspires students to answer questions about the usability of existing wearable devices. A guest post on the human factors blog tells their story.
Amulet on display in the NSF Fashion Show at the USA Science Festival
We’re showing off the new wearable prototype of our Amulet device, today and tomorrow at the USA Science Festival in the Washington DC Convention Center. Come check it out! Amulet appears in the National Science Foundation’s “fashion show” in the NSF pavilion at 12pm and 3pm Saturday and Sunday, April 26-27.
The USA Science Festival is a great family outing – indeed, is targeted towards kids and families. It’s free and open to the public, and also includes five booths presenting other Dartmouth scientists (right next to the AAAS pavilion, upstairs).
With a new grant from the National Science Foundation’s Computer Systems Research program, our group at Dartmouth and Clemson are launching the Amulet project to study the potential for computational jewelry to support mobile-health applications.
The advent of mobile health (mHealth) technology brings great opportunity to improve quality of life, improve individual and public health, and reduce healthcare costs. Although mHealth devices and applications are proliferating, many challenges remain to provide the necessary usability, manageability, interoperability, availability, security, and privacy. The goal of this project is to engineer the tools for, and lay the scientific foundation of, secure wearable mHealth. In the process, we are developing a general framework for body-area pervasive computing, centered around health-monitoring and health-management applications.
Our vision is that computational jewelry, in a form like a bracelet or pendant, will provide the properties essential for successful body-area mHealth networks. These devices coordinate the activity of the body-area network and provide a discreet means for communicating with their wearer. Such devices complement the capabilities of a smartphone, bridging the gap between the type of pervasive computing possible with a mobile phone and that enabled by wearable computing.
Our interdisciplinary team of investigators is designing and developing ‘Amulet’, an electronic bracelet and a software framework that enables developers to create (and users to easily use) safe, secure, and efficient mHealth applications that fit seamlessly into everyday life. The research is determining the degree to which computational jewelry offers advantages in availability, reliability, security, privacy, and usability, and developing techniques that provide these properties in spite of the severely-constrained power resources of wearable jewelry.
We described our vision for this concept in a 2012 HotMobile paper. Subscribe to this blog to hear more about it as our research evolves!