Onda: Data Portraits for Period Health
Onda is a body-literacy toolkit that allows menstruating teenagers to chart and discover the patterns of their cycles by combining tactile and digital components.
Menstrual calendar kit
Design a toolkit to help teenagers discover and appreciate both the beauty of their menstrual cycles and the importance of understanding them; to address period stigma by framing menstrual cycles as mirrors of a fascinating interior reality
Presented on May 11th, 2018
Wood, hemp cord, slider chord locks, parachord, tassels.
Programmed prototypes in P5.js and Processing
HOW IT WORKS
The working prototype documented here has two main parts: a physical interface and a digital interface.
The tangible interface is a counter that resembles an abacus. Its sliding red beads allow the recording of users’ daily basal body temperature (BBT) within a range of 97–99 degrees Fahrenheit, including decimal points (More on why I chose this indicator in the “Further Reading” section).
A mobile companion app will enable users to scan the counter and parse these images via a computer vision algorithm which detects each red bead (representing a temperature reading in a given cycle day) and saves it as a data point within the current cycle.
The app also generates an alternative circular data visualization of a cycle day by day. Users may also input other period-related phenomena (mood swings etc.,) that may reveal unique patterns. Finally, the app creates an archive—a data diary—of users’ information to track privately or share.
Special thanks to
The girls that charted their temps for a month and the ones I interviewed; Nancy Hechinger (thesis advisor) and Davíd Lockard and Michelle Hessel (reearch residents);Peter Longofono and sejo-vega cebrián,
CYCLE DATA PORTRAITS
I explored different visualizations using my own temperature readings–taken from Dec. 29–Apr. 27. In mature cycles with an ovulatory interlude, there is a consistent number of low temperatures before ovulation preceded by a consisten number of high temperatures after ovulation.
DETAILS OF PHYSICAL INTERFACE
SNAPSHOTS OF DIGITAL PROOF OF CONCEPT
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