Since the last edition, I kind of aimed to actually prototype the final, but now I’ve decided to build out the concept instead and keep it non-functional. And even more recently, I’ve decided to move my focus from exclusively posture to focus on body language.
Much of our daily conversations happen in a non-verbal form of communication and is a good indicator of our unspoken emotions. Whether we are feeling happy or sad, our bodies exhibit it whether we mean to or not. And if there is such a strong tie between our emotions and physical being, could we invoke more specific emotions by putting ourselves into specific postures?
We smile when we are happy, and when we force a smile, we feel also happier. This is the philosophy I want to explore with postures– using postures to understand and improve one’s psychological states (and physical states as well). But how do we know what postures will elicit what emotions when body language is fairly unique between different cultures and different individuals?
I think the first step of this project is bringing awareness to an individuals body language. What shape does their body assume when they are focused and engaged in class? How does nervousness translate on the body during an interview?
By attaching accelerometers on the body and syncing the dynamically visualized data onto a portable device, such as a smartphone, one can track with, ideally 2D and 3D visualizations, what patterns their bodies exhibit throughout the day. By syncing their data with their daily Calendars can also give them a better idea of which postures belonged to what activity. After collecting data for a period of time, one should be able to spot abnormalities or differences in posture.
Having this data, one can look back on which days they felt more positive, and see if there is a difference in their body language and posture. After being able to identify different posture values, they can try mimicking the ‘good postures’ to try to bring about more positive emotions. For example, if a student is feeling tired from lack of sleep her posture might be a little more slumped than usual. Being able to manually at will or when a change or abnormality is detected by help draw smarter correlations between posture and mood. Next time the student is feeling tired, her phone can alert her to sit in an position that she doesn’t typically doze in. At the very least it will bring extra attention to her physical state after a night of little sleep.
I think this device could be used to track many kinds of body language. It could be used for physical training for activities like Yoga or Physical Therapy. It could monitor your sleep postures or it could be used in social situations for individuals to manage their body language during social events or interviews. It can be used to provide information about posture alone, or it can be used to provide information about your moods.
With these systems in place, it wouldn’t be absurd to assume one could upload their data. For example, if someone has mastered the perfect golf swing, maybe an amateur golfer could download their physical data and train themselves to perfect that swing. And dancers could practice dance moves without the choreographer.
My biggest doubts lie in whether or not very specific and ranged postures could really greatly enhance mood. Or if the awareness alone is enough to make an individual want to change. It would increase the ability for an individual, but not necessarily motivation. The motivation has to already exist.
If some vibration feedback was built in, perhaps it would help a little, but I’d like to think people would be more fascinated to be aware of the language their bodies exhibit and try to harness that power without too many bells and whistles.
——————- slightly older idea. storyboard may still follow this flow—————————
The general storyboard will follow this order:
Goals: Probably just a quick text saying something along the lines of “increasing posture/body language awareness and adjusting one’s posture”
Benefits of Posture awareness: Diagrams and text (maybe demo)
What is it?: Brief description of what the object is with images and alignment on body and how it is used and what else is required
How does the project work?: Quick break down of the technology and how it functions
Fred example: An in class/working example
Ji Hyun exaple: A social example or a sports example
A list of further uses: eg. customizing data, uploading, downloading
I’m currently between simply filming and directing or going with some kind of animation.
Here is also my BJ Fogg behavior grid: