The Development of a Mobile Smart Watch Application Utilising a Heart Rate Monitor to Introduce Users to the Practice of Mindful Meditation
Cardiff Metropolitan University
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This dissertation explores the topic of meditation when practiced using a mobile application. The literature review explores the history of meditation and the scientific studies that examine its effects. It was found that meditation has the potential to improve one’s health and wellbeing, and can physically alter specific portions of the brain known for processing emotions. Meditation has been proven to improve the symptoms of depression and anxiety, and can support people suffering with substance abuse and obesity. The goal of the project is to develop a stand-alone meditation application developed for an Android smart watch utilising the user’s heart rate. The intention of the application is to introduce people to meditation by using heart rate data to demonstrate its immediate positive effects. After testing the existing software available, it was found that an application of this type does not exist, and based on the opinions expressed in interviews, there is a demand for such an application. Interview results were dependent on the participants meditation experience, the findings suggests that people with less experience are more likely to use a meditation application than people with more experience. It was also discovered that meditation applications seem to be most effective in introducing people to meditation rather than providing long-term assistance. The application has been successfully developed to a prototype standard and recommendations have been suggested to continue development to a market-ready standard. The application has been developed for the Android operating system using the Java programming language and XML markup. The successful test results suggest that the software functions efficiently, meets the application requirements and has the potential for further development.
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