A Harvard biostatistician is rethinking plans to use Apple Watches as part of a research study after finding inconsistencies in the heart rate variability data collected by the devices. He found that the data collected during the same time period appeared to change without warning. "These algorithms are what we would call black boxes — they're not transparent. So it's impossible to know what's in them," JP Onnela, associate professor of biostatistics at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health and developer of the open-source data platform Beiwe, told The Verge . Onnela doesn't usually include commercial wearable devices like the Apple Watch in research studies. For the most part, his teams use research-grade devices that are designed to collect data for scientific studies. As part of a collaboration with the department of neurosurgery at Brigham and Women's Hospital, though, he was interested in the commercially available products. He knew that there were sometimes data issues with those products, and his team wanted to check how severe they were before getting started. So, they checked in on heart rate data his collaborator Hassan Dawood, a research fellow at Brigham and Women's Hospital, exported from his Apple Watch. Dawood exported… Read full this story
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