Data acquisition has become widely available to specific applications in the consumer space, most prominently fitness. The data collected from fitness watches helps athletes optimize their training and adds to the competitive nature of sports. For example, cyclists don't only compare elapsed time but also power, heart rate, cadence, speed and climb rate.
Data like these can be useful in far more areas than the main fitness applications they are available for.
The data acquisition unit shown in this entry is intended to be flexible enough to use in a wide variety of applications including automotive racing, motorcycle racing, running, cycling, snowboarding, skate boarding, surfing, skydiving, and kayaking. Inside the box are a 3 axis accelerometer, a 3 axis gyrometer, a 3 axis magnetometer, a fast updating GPS, and a Bluetooth Smart radio. The included sensors allow for basic performance analysis of all of the previously listed activities and the Bluetooth Smart capabilities of the unit allow an incredible variety of sensors to be added in order to do more advanced performance analysis. Some examples of additional sensors that could be added are heart rate, cycling cadence, barometric pressure, running stride, throttle position, brake pressure, and steering angle.
Knowing data from these sensors will allow amateurs to objectively compare themselves to their peers or to professionals so that they can learn faster, especially when the acquired data are coupled with video. Video alone cannot tell you where you can improve in as much detail as data from physical sensors can. The two together are powerful, which is why we will offer software with this product to sync the video and sensor data.
We believe putting this knowledge in the hands of people who have never thought of acquiring data from their hobbies will help people become better at what they love doing.