CoC welcomes Salud! iPhone app

Photo by Sho Kitamura / Student Publications
Yevgeniy Medynskiy, a fifth-year Ph.D. candidate in the Human-Centered Computing program at Tech, organized a team at College of Computing (CoC) to develop Salud!, a web-based iPhone health application.

According to its official website, Salud! allows users to track personal aspects of their everyday lives, providing visualization and analytics tools with which to make sense of the resulting datasets. Essentially, the application can tell users whether they should eat more before a big exam or if their mood is affected by the weather, for example.

The application targets the general public. Anyone can register for free and quickly through the website and enter data into his or her account by text messaging, e-mailing or using the iPhone app. This benefits users by making the tracking work less burdensome and helps keep things accurate.

The website allows users to try a demo. They can add any item to their Logbooks such as meals, weight, sleep, jogging and migraines, recording personal data such as dates, times, calories and meals. The data is shown in the graph on a daily, weekly and monthly basis.

Salud! is a work-in-progress. By using the application, users not only track their everyday wellness, but also assist the team’s research. Users’ feedback helps the team understand how users approach the system in everyday life and assists the team in adding new features and making changes to further improve the system.

Medynskiy said he is grateful for the positive feedback and attention Salud! has received so far.

Just this semester, he had the privilege to demo Salud! to Institute President G.P. “Bud” Peterson, several members of the University Board of Regents and several representatives from the Georgia government.

Several local and international conferences have accepted papers about the Salud! program and its applications.

This summer, the team will create customized versions of Salud! to target specific two demographic groups: people working with fitness classes and people at high risk for developing diabetes. After the team evaluates participants’ data, they will incorporate the data into the general Salud! application.

The team maintains the Salud! Application Programming Interface (API) as a way of allowing other researchers to leverage their infrastructure.

The biggest client so far has been the Doctor J Says service, which has deployed nutritional advice at kiosks in Tech dining halls over the last few semesters.

Salud! will be used as the official tracking platform for the upcoming GT Biggest Loser competition at CRC.

According to Medynskiy, the developers of Salud!, the team is looking to expand both its mobile and web options.

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