Life Logging

Life Logging


  • New form of recording individual lives using wearable technology. [1]
  • The process of tracking personal data generated by our own behavioral activities. [2]
  • Records personal physical, social and entertainment activity data like exercising, sleeping, and eating. [3]
  • Literally means life+logging.


  • What is it?
    • ”Capture, storage, and distribution of everyday experiences and information for objects and people” [4]
    • Providing useful historical or current status information, sharing unusual moments, and recording as a kind of “backup” memory
    • “Documented life” - Microsoft founder Bill Gates
  • What platforms do it run on and what does this involve?
    • GPS/Car video lifelogs: Trackstice (interfaces to Google Earth)
    • Shoes/personal trainers lifelogs: Nike and Apple formed a partnership using the iPod and the web
      • Runners upload running statistics daily to the Nike Plus community
  • Other mobile apps
    • Reporter, Journey, Path, Moves, HeyDay, etc.


  • Earlier tools
    • Wearable Wireless Webcam
    • Steve Mann [5]
      • 1st person to do lifelogging
      • First-person video from a wearable camera with wearable computing and streaming video
  • Today’s version
    • Smartphones, GPS, Bluetooth
    • Automatic, iON SnapCam, Kapture, Zubie, etc.

Case Study 1 [6]
ComputerWorld: “How lifelogging will become easy and automatic”

  • In the past, lifelogging was only for “supergeeks”
  • Lifelogging cameras are failing now
    • Awkwardly intrusive, inconvenient and tend to take lousy pictures compared to a smartphone

Solution: AI and virtual assistants

  • Improve data collection
  • Auto-captures photos, sounds, motions, location
  • A.I. decides what to capture and retain

Case Study 2

  • How to motivate future behavior with memories? [7]
  • Capturing moments of our life has its tradition in diaries and drawings.
  • Technical inventions let us capture situations in real time in great detail.
  • Lifelogging not only records episodic memories, but also motivate future behavior with recalling positive memories.
  • Memory-based experimental intervention in an attempt to help participants exercise more.
  • Thinking about a positive memory had a significant effect on increasing subjects' wellbeing.

Case Study 3
SenseCam “Do Life-Logging technologies support memory for the past?”[8]
SenseCam is a device which contains a camera and embedded sensors. When users wear it around their neck, it automatically takes images.
Recall of the test date after 10 days and after 4 months with and without an image.
Average score 4/19 after 4 months without an image.
Average score 16/19 after 4 months with an image.
Conclusion: Life-Logging technologies supported memory for the past.


Strength: [9]
Raising Self-Awareness (Sleep, Food consumption, Physical activities)
Total Recall (External memory aid: Alzheimer, dementia, aging memory loss)
Leaving a Digital Heritage (Permanent trace of deceased users remain)
Collective Memory (Data analysis)

Weakness: [10]
Misinterpretation: (Too much information, less-credibility)
Privacy and Security: (Track and trace, Cloud security)


  • Possibility of trading logged data. [11]
    • Indirectly experience with other's data in virtual reality.
  • Records with better gadgets [12]
    • Past: Cameras and Camcorders → Present: Wearable technologies (ex: GoPro, Fitbit)
    • Wearable technologies → Technology Inside Human Bod (ex: Elon Musk’s new technology, implantable smartphones)
3. Kallstrom, Memoto Martin. "How Lifelogging is Transforming the Way We Remember, Track Our Lives." Wired. Conde Nast, 06 Aug. 2015
4. Smart, J., Cascio, J., & Paffendorf, J. (2007). Metaverse roadmap 2007: Pathways to the 3DWeb. A Cross-industry
Public Foresight Project. Retrieved from
5. Revolvy, L. (n.d.). "Lifecasting (video stream)" on Retrieved April 26, 2017, from %28video stream%29&item_type=topic
6. Elgan, M. (2016, November 19). How lifelogging will become easy and automatic. Retrieved April 26, 2017, from
7. Henry Griffith, Yan Shi, Subir Biswas, "A wearable system for asymmetric contactless human sensing", Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society (EMBC) 2016 IEEE 38th Annual International Conference of the, pp. 4991-4994, 2016, ISSN 1558-4615.
8. Abigail Sellen, Andrew Fogg, Mike Aitken, Steve Hodges, Cartsen Rother and Ken Wood, "Do Life-Logging Technologies Support Memory for the Past? An Experimental Study Using SenseCam", Microsoft Research Cambridge, Sep. 2007 Web.
9. Na Li & Frank Hopfgarner, "To Log or Not to Log? SWOT Analysis of Self-Tracking", Dublin City University, Web
10. Na Li & Frank Hopfgarner, "To Log or Not to Log? SWOT Analysis of Self-Tracking", Dublin City University, Web.
11. Karl Toomey. "Lifelogging Products of the Future." Science Gallery. N.p., 10 Feb. 2015.
12. Stapley, Jon. "A questionable future: Remembering the lifelogging camera." Wareable. N.p., 09 Aug. 2016
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