The Physical GA family are quasi invisible, miniaturized, wearable, non-invasive devices designed to accurately and robustly monitor physical and physiological parameters in humans. Physical GA systems integrate multiple sensors (ECG, accelerometers, gyroscopes, pulse oximetry, etc.) securely communicating with each other and with existing gateways (such as mobile phones) to serve as smart parts of a future vision of the internet of things. Physical GAs allow on-board analysis of the acquired biosignals to support real-time feedback to the user, while preserving user privacy and making data accessible to health care professionals. These Physical GA devices are relevant for a myriad of applications in personalized health and wellness management.
Monitoring the functional, physical and nutritional status in the elderly:
Ageing is associated with reduced mobility and increased morbidity. It has been established that increased physical activity and adequate nutrition can attenuate the decline of and even restore musculoskeletal health, for optimal daily functioning, prevention of falls and improved quality of life.
Physical GAs will support the objective assessment and continuous monitoring of the physical, functional and nutritional status of the elderly, and the deployment of personalized lifestyle interventions for healthy and independent ageing.
Physical GAs will provide motivational and practical feedback to boost compliance with a healthy lifestyle, enhancing well-being.
Early diagnosis and management of metabolic disorders and their complications:
Metabolic disorders (e.g., obesity and type II diabetes) are major public health concerns. Lifestyle changes, such as dietary habit modification and increased physical activity are key prevention factors for obesity and its associated metabolic disorders such as diabetes.
Physical GAs will support the monitoring of personalized lifestyle interventions for these disorders, including accurate estimation of energy expenditure and dietary intake. Also, physiological parameters and biomarkers associated with diabetes will enable prevention, early diagnosis of complications, and response to therapeutic interventions.
Characterising the impact of Alzheimer’s disease on physical and bio-chemical body processes:
The third major direction will set the basis for concrete cooperation with medical projects targeting the understanding of the impact of the progression of Alzheimer’s disease on physical and bio-chemical processes in the body. Thus, Physical GAs will capture objective physical and biochemical data from patients with brain disorders in an unobtrusive, comfortable and quasi-continuous way, according to medical community specifications.
Cooperation with One Mind for Research
Environmental Smart Autonomous Systems
Our environment impacts our health and our lives directly through the air we breathe, the water we drink, the food we eat, and the buildings in which we live and work. Many important factors cannot be noticed by humans at all; we have no biological senses for pollutants created by our industrialized world, since evolution will be slow to catch up. We need artificial “sixth senses” that assist our biological ones. The environmental Guardian Angels stand at the interface between people and their environment, providing relevant and real-time information, acting as personal assistants to guide, enable, and protect us all, and to make our lives more enjoyable as a result.
Smart air quality companion for indoors and outdoors:
Is our indoor air fresh and healthy or not? Is it a good time now to go walking outside with our babies or to do our sports workout, or should we wait until the pollen or traffic burden eases and air quality clears up? These GAs will guide us in these kinds of situations.
Guardian Angels for predicting and protection from natural disasters:
Disasters need to be detected early, and in critical situations, everyone needs some emergency guiding. GAs can sense the first weak signs of imminent danger and can warn us accordingly. The first GA development in this area will be focused on monitoring water quality. Other application possibilities will be identified with the participation of potential users and field experts.
Emotional Smart Autonomous Systems
The goal of the Emotional Smart Autonomous Systems is to sense the body’s reactions to one’s emotions or state of mind, correlated with environment and context, in order to provide objective and holistic information to improve services delivered to people, benefiting both society and the economy. The Emotional Guardian Angels systems will achieve these goals through providing a miniaturized, zero-power, personalized and private system for monitoring the body’s emotional and cognitive states. These services can be targeted both at enhancing the performance or well‐being of healthy people, and at supporting patients to improve their quality of life and help in their recovery.
Enhancing the (emotional) performance or well-being of healthy people:
Stress and fatigue are components of everyday life, and affect a large number of persons in a wide number of situations. For drivers on the road, surgeons during surgery, pilots and air traffic controllers, business people making important decisions, athletes and public speakers, the ability to perform a task safely and efficiently is affected unconsciously by performance anxiety, emotions, stress and fatigue. The aim of the Emotional Guardian Angels for monitoring healthy persons is to enhance their ability to perform a given task through monitoring stress, attention and fatigue levels, and providing feedback and advice to increase the happiness people experience in life and to reduce the risk of adverse outcomes.
The integrated Emotional GA system for supporting patients will allow deeper understanding of a person’s state of mind, and the effects of various treatments on an individual, towards the creation of personalized treatment and of disorder management. Many applications of this concept are envisioned: managing stress, understanding Autism Spectrum Disorders, supporting motor neuro rehabilitation of stroke patients, providing feedback from Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) patients, and managing mental health disorders.