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Virtual Dictionary

Heart Rate Variability

Heart Rate Variability or HRV is a measure of the variation in the time delay between heartbeats of a given biological heart inside a living being's body. When scanned in real time through some form of biometric sensor, this interval becomes a potentially useful indicator of not just health, but also of emotional mental state.

This occurs because when we change our emotional state, the change doesn't just occur in our brains and stay in our brains. It also triggers changes throughout the body, as the body prepares to act on a physical reason for that change in state. The most famous is the 'fight or flight' reflex, in which a fear or anger emotion triggers our body to radically alter its priorities and shut down any system that is not immediately useful for attacking of fleeing from the source of the threat. Fight or flight doesn't work so well in modern societies because the fear or anger response may not be to a physical danger, but an uncomfortable activity we're about to do or even to something we've just read.

Regardless, the fight or flight response to fear or anger causes changes in the heart as elevated blood flow is required, so the heart pumps faster, and the interval between beats decreases. By tracking nothing else but heart rate variability we immediately know that the person the heart belongs to is scared or angry, based on this change alone.

But it doesn't stop there. Fight or flight is the most famous, but every emotional state has its own effects. Stress and high strain situations (such as a tight deadline) also decrease the time between heartbeats, but in a different pattern to anger. Relaxation increases it, and happiness will even produce identifiable patterns.

The pattern of heartbeats differs from individual to individual of course, and the alterations will be different when the individual is healthy compared to when they are sick, but they are consistent for the same individual. Over time a heart rate sensor can adapt to the peculiarities of an individual heart and map the emotional state of the user in real-time with a fair degree of accuracy.

Thus heart rate variability can actually be used as a form of brain interface, allowing a system to interact and alter itself in response to the subject's mood, or even allowing the subject's mood to be used as a control vector. You could, at the greatest extremes, drive a vehicle with mood alone. Although that could lead to some interesting situations if an accident happens and the user panics....

But in the main, it allows another method for direct brain input, that is non-invasive, and isn't adding more weight or mass of sensor systems to the over crowded head area to do so.

See Also: Brain Computer Interface, Neuroprosthetic, Biometric, Biometric Interface

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Heart Rate Variability



Resources in our database matching the Term Heart Rate Variability:

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The LifeShirt is a garment (not necessarily a shirt) developed by VivoMetrics, which monitors tyhe wearer's vital signs. Collecting a continuous stream of respiration flow, heart rate, breathing regularity, sweat production and other key metrics.

Locally Hosted resource
A Camera that Detects Vital Signs
Originally designed with Olympic events in mind, the INCA camera is a tiny recording device that is also perhaps the first SimStim device in existence. It is capable of interfacing with any body area network to record metadata of temperature, heart rate, breathing, potentially even mood of the subject on screen, and transferring that data directly onto the video file itself, as additional data.

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Japanese Telecomm Predicts Fully Immersive Mainstream VR by 2020
With the expansion rate of Japan's wireless networks in terms of both bandwidth and decreasing cost, coupled with the rate of development of mobile phones into computing platforms in their own right, NTT DoCoMo, Japan's largest mobile phone carrier service believe that this estimate is about right.

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Philips euHeart Computer Modelling Project Aims to Build a Virtual Heart
Philips Electronics announced at the end of August 2008, that it was going to lead a consortium, with the express goal of developing a virtual reality heart simulator sophisticated enough to be used in patient care.

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PET Resolution Increases by Leaps and Bounds
ET scans suffer quite a bit when they image moving tissue, such as a beating heart. No scan is instantaneous, and as the slices move down, the beating of the heart causes distortion that is hard to remove from the result, as pieces do not line up correctly. A solution to this, that increases the resolution as a side-effect, may have been found.

World Review: Dive In
World Review: Dive In welcome screen
DiveIn is a little bit of an oddity. Well, it would be, if the company that makes it, did not churn out similar worlds at a rate of knots.

Linked resource
To P, or not to P (-Kill that is)?
A look at why players either embrace player-killing gladly into their heart, or else shun the practice altogether.

Linked resource
Seeds of Inspiration
?For those considering embarking on the ambitious effort of building their own original story telling arena, take heart. It can be done.?

A heart-warming production of Steven Spielberg, in which robotic and organic individuals work together as peers; sharing the same space and coexisting, to improve the quality of life for all.


Industry News containing the Term Heart Rate Variability:

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A new study from Karolinska Institutet demonstrates that a change in the ECG wave called the QRS prolongation is associated with a higher rate of heart-failure mortality. According to the team that carried out the study, which is published ...

A University of Virginia graduate student has developed a biofeedback-based system that helps smartphones select music that will help get their owners’ heart pumping during exercise, or slow it down when they want to cool down or relax.

Within a year, a group of Spanish researchers is planning to market a remote cardiac monitoring system aimed at giving people with heart problems greater independence, peace of mind and quality of life.

The system, developed ...

Some of the neural circuitry inside the heart and cardiovascular ssystem itself has been deciphered, showing how the nerve pathways form circuits and processing sub-systems that regulate blood pumping independently of the brain.

Providing patients with chronic heart failure access to remote monitoring, for example by telephone or telemonitoring using wireless technology, reduces deaths and hospitalisations and may provide benefits on health care costs and quality o...