We've talked before about the potential for converting our health into a tangible reward mechanism, an early vision we had for the NUScore, when we were building the NUWE app for iOS.
I recently came across a guy in our building who is working on a much more serious undertaking of the concept...
To capture tangible value from movement we should create a virtual unit of movement ... that can be transferred and exchanged for goods and services.
The whole premise being that, in tackling the cognitive dissonance attached to leading an unhealthy lifestyle, and thus burdening the social systems on which we rely and frankly costing the tax payer way too much money, we can bring the value attained through behavioural and lifestyle improvements into the present.
instant gratification loop positively reinforcing small and tangible decisions, likely aided by additional services focussed on behavioural change and improving health outcomes, would establish a new paradigm in conscious self-improvement.
So what would it take to build this new economy?
How would the very real and obvious challenge of movement tracking
verification take place?
What kind of learnings can we take from the recent rise (and fall, and rise, and fall, and rise... ) of cryptocurrencies offer
us by way of guidance as to the pitfalls and the promise?
What kind of security issues will we encounter?
And how ready is the commercial world for another parallel economic thread?
Should we be limiting ourselves to physical activity? What role does nutrition tracking and data play and how do we manage that?
I think my original reaction was to see this as a gimmick - promotional tactic to get retailers to promote and incentivise good healthy tracking behaviour and serve the vanity metrics of apps that are being distributed to track said data. But, on further reflection, I think there's a deeper force at play here. There's a good reason to explore this. I have a feeling that the answer, as ever wont be a simple one (on the backend anyway) but to the Person and Society that this mission is set to help, it's clear that it's at the very least, worth a good crack.
The SweatCo.in Manifesto is worth a read. I have just been invited to BETA test their iOS app and I'll hopefully be able to post some comments and thoughts on that as well as get some Q&A time with the SweatCo.in team in the next couple of weeks to elaborate further.
In the meantime, I think this is a very interesting thread to open up, would love to hear other thoughts.