Geeks2U Promise
We guarantee you'll love our fast, friendly service - or we'll refund your money.  
133,572 Happy Customers & Counting
Need tech support?
1300 769 448
Extended hours, 7 days a week
Home  /  geekspeak  /  How Much eHealth Should You Manage Yourself?

How Much eHealth Should You Manage Yourself?

Tags : 

Philips recently launched an interesting application for the Apple iPad. Called VitalSigns, it’s a 99c app that uses the iPad’s camera to  record your heart and breathing rate. Unlike when you might do so at a general practitioner’s office or in a hospital, there’s no cuff to wear or sensor of any type to deal with; instead the camera measures the colour differences in your face, as well as the movements of your chest to approximate the rate at which you’re breathing. Give it a minute or two, and it’ll return a reasonable approximation of both.  Curiously, you can then update Twitter or Facebook with your vital statistics, although (while I engage with Social Networking on an incredibly regular basis), I’m befuddled why you’d want to.

I gave the app a quick spin, and it’s quite surprising what it can actually track; within a very short space of time the graph to measure breathing was going up and down in an eerie representation of the way I was breathing at the time. Very cool technology without a shadow of a doubt.

But I won’t be deleting my GP’s phone number from my phone any time soon, just because I’ve got a measuring tool of my own. For a start, the app is plastered with all kinds of legal disclaimers, as it’s not a dedicated and gently calibrated piece of medical technology; it’s a mass market tablet computer running some software. Equally, I’m not fully qualified to interpret the results it gives, except in the most broad ways. As a test, I took a measurement while sitting, then did a five minute jog on the spot and measured again. Not surprisingly, my heart rate was remarkably high for the second reading, but it didn’t mean I needed to rush to call for an ambulance.

The same is true of a lot of online medical information. There’s definitely something to be said for being well read, and if you’re so inclined, many of the world’s greatest medical texts and minds are but a simple Google search away. That doesn’t immediately turn you into a qualified doctor, just the same as reading the instructions for a low water usage shower doesn’t turn you into a plumber, or reading this article turn you into a journalist. Knowledge can be power, but knowing exactly how to apply that knowledge in the correct context is what gives that knowledge power. As such, the Vital Signs app is a nice party trick to pull out, and could conceivably be of use to those who need to take regular readings with a capacity for a margin of error, but I wouldn’t rely on it to save my life.

FacebookTwitterGoogle+Share

Recent News

world

The ambition behind Google’s Street View was (originally) to provide a little more human context to people’s map searches. It’s all very good to say that a journey will take so many minutes, or that you need to make this sequence of turns in order to get to your destination, but it’s long been a… More 

snapdragon

Ever since the computer market shifted from desktop PCs to laptops, there’s been a significant balancing act going on between the needs of computer users for processing power to run programs, and the needs of those same users for battery power to keep their laptops going. At a simplified level, the harder you push a… More 

Apple-Apple

For the longest time, the generally accepted knowledge was that Apple’s Mac computers didn’t get malware or viruses. Apple even went so far as to mock its PC opposition in the famous “Mac vs PC” ads for the issues they had around security and malware, to a fairly solid effect. While Apple’s Macs do still… More 

intel

Quite often these days when we hear about a major security flaw, it’s to do with the underlying software that we’re running on our PCs, whether it’s a dodgy browser exploit, some kind of flaw in productivity software or even “free” content sites that are awash with malware. It’s not quite so often that we… More