This endangered cheetah is wearing a Fullpower AI-pod for research purposes. The pod and its associated infrastructure are an AI-powered sensor-fusion edge cloud solution that learns about the Cheetah’s behavior. The AI-pod is small, waterproof, and rugged. We are in the process of learning a lot about cheetah behavior. For example: “When do Cheetahs really sleep?” or “When to Cheetahs really hunt?” This picture was taken at the Cheetah Conservation Fund based out of Namibia.
Philippe Kahn joins the Mentaltrener podcast hosted by Frank Nilsen. Frank is “the Norwegian Joe Rogan” and the podcast is in English and was lots of fun. The Mentaltrener podcast features interviews with inspiring and successful people from all over the world about their mindset strategies for overcoming fear and various challenges on their journey to success. Visit the link below to listen:
Asleep. We spend about a third of our lives in a state of slumber. Increasingly documented as a key component of human well-being, sleep enables us to recover and regenerate physically and mentally. Getting too little of it or having poor night’s sleep creates an imbalance that has knock-on effects on cognitive ability, mood, and general performance. For example, the coaches and medical staff at Hintsa Performance emphasize sleep as one of the 6 key components of success for high-level athletes and business people, in what is described as the Circle of Better Life. In The Sleep Revolution, Arianna Huffington claims, “We are in the midst of a sleep deprivation crisis,” and details the consequences society will face socially and economically if we do not adequately address our sleep habits.
Yet, for all the various tips and tricks proposed to improve sleep it remains a largely obscure state that many of us rarely reflect upon – unless you have a bad night’s sleep. Some of us are more aware of the importance of sleep. Severe sleep disorders afflict as much as 16.6% of the population worldwide, if not more, according to a 2012 Warwick University study. There are a number of challenges in researching sleep disorders; however, new technologies are paving the way for improved means of gaining valuable insights into sleep.
Three innovative areas that ETH Zurich currently investigates could hold the answers to optimizing sleep.
Tracking Brain Activity
The SleepLoop project is developing a device in the form of a headband that measures and analyzes brain waves, subsequently playing a matching sound to stimulate deeper sleep. One of the major impediments to traditional sleep studies is the bulky equipment required to measure the subject, often requiring them to sleep in the lab. SleepLoop’s wearable technology optimizes data collection providing quality results that are faster, cheaper, and affords greater comfort to human subjects taking part in the study. This technology could potentially deliver a cure to sleep disorders without the need for drug therapies and may have applications in the prevention of certain brain diseases.
Don’t Hold Your Breath
Scientists in ETH Zurich’s Organic Chemistry Lab have increased 5-fold the sensitivity of their sleep measuring devices using secondary electrospray ionisation (SESI). “This sensitivity is sufficient for our SESI devices to be used for breath analysis in medicine,” says Professor Pablo Sinues. One of the applications Sinues and his team are investigating is the analysis of exhaled breath in order to diagnose sleep apnea. Their future projects include looking at how to simplify instruments to deploy in clinics and doctors’ offices.
Originally created to study the optimal rocking movements for falling asleep, researchers have reengineered the Somnomat bed to study snoring. In both cases, the Sensory-Motor Systems Lab envisions an autonomous robotic platform capable of monitoring, detecting, and self-adjusting as the user sleeps. By customizing the bed to an individual’s preferred conditions, the bed will be able to guarantee a good night’s sleep.
Numbers Don’t Lie
Complimentary to all of these research areas is the work led by ETH Zurich alumnus Philippe Kahn at the California-based company Fullpower Technologies. Drawing on their knowledge of big data, machine learning, and AI, they have developed the Sleeptracker® platform to analyze over 250 million of nights of sleep from millions of individuals worldwide. Their results notably show that there is a genetic predisposition to being a morning or an evening person. According to Kahn, “The challenge is that our modern society tends to force everyone to a schedule inherited from the early days of the industrial revolution. This in turn means that there is about 25% of the population that may not perform optimally on a recommended modern schedule.”
It turns out that in addition to the science of sleep providing solutions to sleepless nights, we may also need to adapt some of our societal parameters to offer more flexibility to account for different sleeping habits and preferences.
Earlier this year, Prof Zicari had the pleasure of interviewing Philippe Kahn, a mathematician, well-known technology innovator, entrepreneur and founder of four technology companies: Fullpower Technologies, LightSurf Technologies, Starfish Software and Borland.
“There is a lot of hype about the dangers of IoT and AI. It’s important to understand that nobody is building Blade-Runner style replicants.” — Philippe Kahn
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Figure 1 Self-explanatory: NY parties the most, and surprise, Las Vegas the least. The explanation is simple: That’s because Sleeptracker users in Vegas actually work in Vegas and are not visiting to party. In our little piece of paradise in Santa Cruz, SurfCity, we tend to go to bed early to catch the surf in the morning before work.
Figure 2 is about heart rate and the effects of alcohol on sleep. After studying millions of nights of sleep we noticed that alcohol pumps up heart rates significantly. We can see this here when on NYE, people tend to drink more. And guess what: The younger crowd drinks much more and heart rate gets significantly affected.
Philippe Kahn founded Borland, Starfish Software, LightSurf, and Fullpower Technologies. He talks to Leo Laporte about writing Turbo Pascal, inventing the first cameraphone during the birth of his daughter, and the data-driven science of sleep tech.
Congratulations Michael, Jeffrey and Michael for your unveiling of the molecular mechanisms that control the circadian rhythm.
Yes, our three science heroes have figured out that while we sleep our “protein batteries” get recharged and during the day our “protein batteries” get depleted. It all seems to work in rhythmic patterns timed by the rotation of planet earth. That’s the molecular-biologists’ confirmation of what the data shows, analyzing millions of night of sleep with the Sleeptracker deep learning solution among other things.
Further, the data shows that in eachsleep cycle, each phase of sleep (deep, light and REM), is essential and contributes to regeneration. With every complete sleep cycle, the mind, body and soul get regenerated. On average, for Ms. and Mr. Everyone it takes a total of four sleep cycles to get reasonably recharged and to perform emotionally, intellectually and physically the next day. Using a car as an analogy, think of deep sleep as the engine, light sleep as the body, and REM as the wheels. You need them all, equally, cyclicly, and multiple times during one night, or in separate naps.
From an evolutionary standpoint, genetic research has now established that 25% of us are night owls and perform best at night, 50% are morning larks, and the rest can perform both as owls and larks. What a fantastic opportunity to help Ms. and Mr. Everyone sleep better!
Again congratulations Michael, Jeffrey and Michael for your unveiling of the molecular mechanisms that control the circadian rhythms and for winning the Nobel prize.
In a nutshell, the Sleeptracker® Monitor is about small day-to-day non-invasive improvements for Ms. and Mr. Everyone using the principles of CBM (Cognitive Behavioral Modification) that add-up over time to improved sleep in the comfort of one’s home. Polysomnography (PSG) is about wearing a battery of sensors and monitors for diagnosing potentially life-threatening sleep disorders such as severe apnea in one or more sessions in a sleep lab. Both PSG and the Sleeptracker® Monitor are complementary and “compatible.” Big data and AI are what drive the innovation in the Sleeptracker® Monitor.
The Sleeptracker system is focused on Cognitive Behavioral Modification and understanding what simple practical matters impact our daily sleep. The idea is to improve sleep for Ms. and Mr. Everyone with small adaptations suggested by AI working with big data sets. With millions of users and millions of nights of sleep to draw from, the Sleeptracker AI engine helps to give us immediately actionable personal insights as to what impacts a night of sleep. The AI engine observes short, medium, and long-term personal daily sleep patterns and compares the Sleeptracker user to hundreds of thousands of people “just like me” to provide actionable personal insights. Through this process, the Sleeptracker user can experience and quantify for themselves the effects of making measured changes to their sleep routine. The data show key impacts to our sleep quality are directly tied to daily exercise, proximity of meals to bed-time, alcohol consumption and stress. These behaviors which directly affect sleep are handled privately, confidentially and securely for the purpose of understanding and further improving using the principles of CBM. Throughout the night, and completely non-invasively, the Sleeptracker® Monitor continuously monitors breathing rate, heart rate, motion, wake-up and out-of-bed events. In time, monitoring will expand to include air quality, ambient noise and temperature of the sleeping environment to provide greater insight into environmental impacts to one’s sleep. For example, sleeping with a partner, pets on the bed and the impact of children on sleep are important factors which the Sleeptracker AI-engine takes into account. With CBM, the AI-powered coaching agent suggests simple actionable tips that help improve sleep for Ms. and Mr. Everyone, a little at a time.
By contrast, Polysomnography (PSG) is focused in today’s medical world in identifying candidates for CPAP machines. That’s very important and probably the most actionable matter that is derived from PSG study as sleep apnea is a potentially life-threatening condition. One must remember, the Heisenberg Uncertainly Principle (HUP) shows the measuring apparatus of an experiment impacts the outcome of the experiment. Anyone who has participated in a polysomnography study knows how invasive PSG can be to sleep. In fact, often the PSG requires patients be monitored multiple nights to obtain a clear understanding of their tendency to apnea due to the invasive nature of the equipment and restlessness from not sleeping in one’s home environment. Most agree that an important part of sleep hygiene is a consistent schedule and conducive sleep environment. Diagnosing apnea and the prescription of CPAP machines is a multibillion-dollar business and of course is indispensable to those diagnosed. The Sleeptracker® Monitor is meant to be a complimentary product to PSG and not meant to diagnose, but to provide insight into sleep patterns and the measured changes one can make to improve one’s sleep routine.
Correlation of the Sleeptracker® Monitor to Polysomnography is accomplished through a fully operational onsite PSG lab staffed by a licensed sleep specialist. While the focus is on CBM rather than diagnosing apnea, this ongoing calibration ensures the Sleeptracker® Monitor delivers greater than 90% accuracy compared to invasive sleep monitoring. Accuracy is focused on time to fall asleep, sleep efficiency, wake-up events, respiration rates, heart rates and REM sleep.
We’d be happy to have you try the Fullpower sleep lab for a complete free and confidential sleep study if you’d like. Here is an article by Fortune magazine that is two years old and describes our sleep lab and how we use it: //fortune.com/2015/06/29/sleep-data/
In conclusion, as the data sets grow with Fullpower’s advanced AI methodologies, we learn more and more about our sleep and how the quality of our sleep compares to “people just like me” in a non-invasive sleep environment. Using CBM, we make small modifications that help significantly improve our sleep and health over time. For severe sleep disorders, PSG and a trained MD are key for prescribing a CPAP machine and treating the sleep disorders. For everything else, the Sleeptracker® Monitor offers valuable insight and actionable coaching into one’s sleep routine for a better night’s sleep.