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Enjoy a festival without alcohol

Alcohol-free beer at Rock Werchter

July 10, 2018
This year I didn't drink alcohol during Rock Werchter, leading to interesting observations during the music festival.

Last weekend me and my brother went to Rock Werchter, a multi-day, music festival in Belgium. Over 140 thousand visitors enjoy world famous artists like Pearl Jam, Nick Cave, Artic Monkeys, Noel Gallagher, The Killers and the Queens of the Stone Age. This year I didn't drink alcohol during the festival, leading to some interesting observations...

Listen to your body

Why I stopped using health and fitness sensors

May 17, 2018
Using health data gathered by sensors and wearables I learned to listen to my body. Now I have stopped using bluetooth sensors all together.

A good customer of mine was once a physiotherapist, he told me about people asking him to "feel their muscles" to tell them how they where doing. "Crazy!" he told me: "I can never feel better than the people themselves, if they only would listen to their body". This caused me to question the health and fitness sensors I use.

Outside the comfort zone: amateur acting

Wearing an heart rate monitor during my debut performance

Apr. 18, 2018
This month I strapped myself with sensors during a little experiment outside my comfort zone: I debuted as amateur actor!

This month I made my debut as amateur actor. I am no Hollywood star, nor do I envy to become one. But I do like crazy experiments and operating outside of my comfort zone often leads to new and refreshing insights. I took part in an amateur drama play and - in the name of science and fun - strapped myself with sensors to measure what happened to my body.

Commuting by bike

One week (240KM) on the VanMoof Electrified S

Dec. 2, 2017
One week on the VanMoof Electrified S E-bike testing it for commuting and comparing it to a normal bike.

For a few years now, I commute to work using a bicycle. I have lost more than 15KG since I stopped using my scooter. This week I tested a VanMoof Electrified S, an electric bike with an industrial, minimal design. Is it any good? How does it compare to a normal bike? Will an electric bike make you lazy? Read along to find out!

Collecting health data with Biostrap

Wearing a clinical-grade photoplethysmography (PPG) sensor for a month

Nov. 15, 2017
Wearing a clinical-grade PPG sensor for a month to collect advanced biometrics from my wrist.

Most wearables (smartwatches, fitness trackers, etc.) use very basic sensors to capture heart rate. Their signal is binary: just counting beats. Biostrap is different, instead of just checking pulses, it captures a high-fidelity PPG waveform. These waveforms are the same kind that doctors use, making me wonder what I could learn from them!

Fietselfstedentocht 2017

Cycling the 235KM bicycle tour through Friesland

June 30, 2017
Cycling the 235KM long Fietselfstedentocht through Friesland

This month I cycled the Fietselfstedentocht, a 235KM tour through Friesland. This tour brings you through various Frisian cities throughout one of the most Northern provinces of the Netherlands. The tour was first organised in 1912 and has grown to become legendary due to its history, challenge and popularity; well worthy of a blog post!

Smartwatches vs Mechanical watches

Why I still wear mechanical and why smartwatches have potential

Apr. 30, 2017
Why I still wear a mechanical watch and why smartwatches have potential.

Technology has come a long way since the first computer. Smartwatches today are very much an achievement of miniaturisation of technology. I recently used an Apple Watch Series 2 to find out if technology has come far enough to replace my mechanical watch, today I share you my findings.

One year of cycling

GPS recording an entire year of bike rides using Garmin and Strava

Dec. 31, 2016
GPS recording an entire year of bike rides using Garmin and Strava.

One year ago I started recording all my bike rides, including commutes, short grocery trips and long Gran Fondos. I equipped my bicycles with Garmin Edge computers that recorded location (GPS), speed, cadence and my heart rate. I covered more than 7683 kilometers during 320 hours of riding. It's time to review all the data and share some photos I took along the ride!

Harvesting boredom to let creativity flourish

using the Punkt MP01 dumb phone

Oct. 1, 2016
What does it mean for my state of mind and creativity if I am no longer be constantly connected to the Internet using a smartphone.

Smartphones are everywhere in the modern society we live in today. Through our 4G and WiFi connections the internet is just one tap away. In fact, it is so close that it feels like a natural extension. But is this wealth of information all good or does it have a downside too? It seems like an interesting experiment to go app-less for a while and solely use a dumb phone.

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Riding the VanMoof through the Dutch country side
Riding the VanMoof through the Dutch country side
Something is missing... my front wheel!
Something is missing... my front wheel!
The booster button, conveniently positioned near the left thumb
The booster button, conveniently positioned near the left thumb
My mechanical watch in action
My mechanical watch in action
The Punkt MP01 dumb phone
The Punkt MP01 dumb phone
De Opregte Amateur
De Opregte Amateur
Biometric readings covering the month leading up to the performance
Biometric readings covering the month leading up to the performance
During autumn the days became shorter and many rides where done during dusk or dawn. It's nice to see the sun come up or go down.
During autumn the days became shorter and many rides where done during dusk or dawn. It's nice to see the sun come up or go down.
First gran fondo was cycling around the Dutch
First gran fondo was cycling around the Dutch "Markermeer", a 208.5KM ride.
A mechanical watch: Christiaan van der Klaauw
A mechanical watch: Christiaan van der Klaauw
Heart rate variability (HRV) as measured and explained by Biostrap
Heart rate variability (HRV) as measured and explained by Biostrap
Finished! Collected all the stamps, earned the medal and a drink to celebrate an awesome day!
Finished! Collected all the stamps, earned the medal and a drink to celebrate an awesome day!
This photo was taken during a ride through the forest near Hilversum. The nearby trees really give you a sense of speed (and reason to stay focussed on steering straight...)
This photo was taken during a ride through the forest near Hilversum. The nearby trees really give you a sense of speed (and reason to stay focussed on steering straight...)
For longer rides (>8 hours) the bike computer required additional power. I installed small USB power bank in my seat bag.
For longer rides (>8 hours) the bike computer required additional power. I installed small USB power bank in my seat bag.
Crowdy streets near stamp posts along the route
Crowdy streets near stamp posts along the route
Rain radar image during test riding the Electrified S (source: knmi.nl)
Rain radar image during test riding the Electrified S (source: knmi.nl)
Biostrap, wrist band, collecting health data on a daily basis, providing long term insights
Biostrap, wrist band, collecting health data on a daily basis, providing long term insights
Set to go - ready for 235KM on two wheels!
Set to go - ready for 235KM on two wheels!

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