A wearable computer is also known as a body borne computer. They are basically very small electronic devices, generally worn on the wrist or another body part. Generally, they can be worn either on or under their clothing. There are many different types of wearable computers. A very simple example, for instance, is the step counter, which does nothing else but count how many steps the wearer takes each and every day. The more advanced models have been designed to work in computational support, surpassing coded logic and simple hardware.
Features of Wearable Computers
Wearable computers have a lot of different features depending on which one you pick and what you are using it for. However, one feature that you will see in all wearable computers is that they are all consistent. The interaction between the user and the computer itself is constant, which means the device does not have to be switched on and off all the time. Another feature that you will see in all wearable computers is that they are able to multi task. If you are using the device, you don’t need to stop and switch it off if you suddenly start doing something else. Instead, it can actually incorporate into your behavior. For many, it is almost like a prosthetic that functions as an extension to their own body and mind.
Issues with Wearable Mobile Computers
There are a number of issues with a wearable mobile computer. One of the issues is the ambient intelligence of the device. There are also some issues within computing research communities. You need to think about such things as heat dissipation and power management, but also such things as a wireless area network, software architecture and personal area networks.
Advantages of Wearable Computers
There are always issues to think about regardless of what the technology - or lack of technology for that matter - is. However, with mobile wearable computers, the benefits greatly outweigh the potential drawbacks. One of the main benefits is that communication is greatly enhanced, which improves team working and person to person communication when they are not physically located in proximity to each other. Secondly, one of the great things about a wearable mobile computer is that it can be used to pick out people in high security areas, like airports. Considering the constant terror alerts, this is a very important feature in terms of homeland security. One of the most important benefits, however, is how well it is able to work with the needs of the individual wearer, as it can be programmed in such a way that it does exactly what the individual needs it to do. Although they are small, they are unlikely to get lost so long as they are worn the appropriate way. They are embedded onto people’s bodies, generally through a strap, which makes it very difficult to accidentally misplace it in the way that PDAs and other handheld devices often are. A wearable computer also makes it possible for standard daily tasks to be completed without thinking about it. The step counter is a good example, which is designed to track how the wearer moves in a set period of time, without being intrusive in doing so.
Wearable mobile computers are highly flexible in their use and give users a lot of freedom in terms of what they want to achieve. It also gives freedom of movement, as they are not cumbersome and don’t get in the way. Depending on how advanced the wearable mobile computer is, it can allow a user to work from anywhere in the world, which promotes mobile and flexible working. This has been proven to increase employee happiness, in turn increasing productivity. In essence, the convenience that is offered by wearable mobile computers is unsurpassed.
An Example of a Wearable Mobile Computer in Action
Wearable mobile computers are used in a variety of applications. We have already discussed the step computer, which is a very simple example. An example of a far more complex way of using the mobile computers is within the healthcare industry. A surgeon can wear the computer as an attachment to their arm. Data is then sent in between the different computers so that surgeons are able to look up information as and when required. This is fantastic in terms of saving time, which is very important within surgical procedures. Finding ways to improve how quickly an operation takes place is incredibly important and this can be achieved by something as simple as a mobile wearable computer.