The HandWave Bluetooth Skin Conductance Sensor

Marc Strauss, Carson Reynolds, Stephen Hughes, Kyoung Park, Gary McDarby, Rosalind W. Picard


HandWave is a small, wireless, networked skin conductance sensor for affective computing applications. It is used to detect information related to emotional, cognitive, and physical arousal of mobile users. Many existing affective computing systems make use of sensors that are inflexible and often physically attached to supporting computers. In contrast, HandWave allows an additional degree of flexibility by providing ad-hoc wireless networking capabilities to a wide variety of Bluetooth devices as well as adaptive biosignal amplification. As a consequence, HandWave is used in a variety of affective computing applications such as games, tutoring systems, experimental data collection, and augmented journaling. This paper describes the novel design attributes of this handheld sensor, its development, and various form factors. Future work includes an extension of this approach to other biometric signals of interest to affective computing researchers. Author Keywords: Sensors, Affective Computing, Electrodermal Activity (EDA), Skin Conductance, Emotion Recognition, Wearable Computing, Bluetooth, Wireless Sensing

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