Health trackers are giving people a sixth sense, imparting a permanent psycho-awareness to them, about their bodies.
Eloise Le Santo has a sixth sense. She can feel her body’s patterns: her oscillating levels of weakness and strength; her mental sharpness turning dull and then sharp again; and her emotions — the way that anger predictably subsides into calm. From noticing these sensations alone, she can tell when she’s ovulating.
Le Santo developed this sixth sense after she started tracking her menstrual cycle using Glow, an ovulation and fertility calendar app. The tracking made her more attuned to how her body changes throughout the month. She started noticing subtle feelings that have eluded her previously.
If you use a wearable long enough, you may not need one anymore. Some forms of health data tracking can increase users’ bodily awareness, according to the 2016 book Self-tracking, written by University of Washington data scientist Gina Neff and Intel research scientist Dawn Nafus. “The data becomes a ‘prosthetic of feeling’, something to help us sense our bodies,” they write. Eventually, like training wheels, the technology may be discarded altogether.
Soon in the future, fortunately or unfortunately, we will become the machine. Happy?
Source: The Outline, How-To Geek
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