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When installing applications from around the Web, you may have encountered some that require you to have installed various versions of Microsoft’s .NET Framework.
The .NET Framework is, in truth, a vital part of many applications from around the Web, no matter their purpose. Let’s get started figuring out what that means.What’s a Framework?
Essentially, a framework is something made to support other applications. In the case of the .NET Framework, it contains files and functions that aren’t actually within the programs that call upon them, so having these Frameworks save developers the trouble of having to code many of these things all by themselves.What does .NET mean?
In this context, .NET refers to a group of technologies that allows applications to interact over and through the Internet to a fuller extent. This is used by both local applications and web servers to drive activity over the Internet and is the basis beyond which cloud computing services are built.
.NET uses the following Internet standards:
HTTP – You may recognize this. It stands for “HyperText Transfer Protocol”, and it’s used to determine what your browser and the web server do in response to your commands, like typing in a web address.
XML – Extensible Markup Language. This is made for web documents in particular, allowing tags that define different formatting for different things.
SOAP – Simple Object Access Protocol. This is an XML-based messaging service used to encode messages before sending them over the network. Messages from SOAP are transmitted through various Internet protocols, like HTTP.
UDDI – Universal Description, Discovery and Integration. This acts as a phonebook of sorts, allowing businesses to find each other over the Internet.So, what’s the .NET Framework?
The .NET Framework is a framework of technologies that is used by applications that, in themselves, rely on .NET technologies. Applications that require the .NET Framework usually heavily factor Internet access into their primary usages.
The .NET Framework in itself uses the following:
CLR – Common Language Runtime. This manages .NET code, memory, exceptions, debugging, profiling and security. This is also known as the VES, or Virtual Execution System.
FCL – Framework Class Library. Name for thousands of classes which are used to define object properties. These classes include runtime functionality, database interaction and other features.
chúng tôi – Used to create web pages and services. To do this, it treats everything on a page as an object to run server-side. These pages are then compiled into another language, which is then compiled to native code (for your own machine), which is then run through your processor.What do I do with it?
First thing’s first. Make sure you’ve grabbed the most recent version from Microsoft’s website. Also be sure to use Windows Update to keep your system up to par – some parts of the .NET Framework may not be compatible if you don’t have the latest, greatest Windows updates installed onto your computer.
After that, you should be fine. If something goes wrong with installation, consider using the .NET Framework Cleanup tool to get rid of older versions that may be causing you trouble. No applications should be strictly incompatible with a newer version of the Framework, but on the off chance they are, the application will tell you which version you need, after which you need only to search for it and download it to your computer.
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In today’s digital age, businesses rely heavily on efficiently organizing and retrieving vast amounts of data. At the heart of this data-driven world lies the database—an indispensable tool for storing, managing, and accessing information. But what exactly is a database? This comprehensive article delves into the intricate world of data bases, exploring their inner workings and unveiling their best features. We will uncover how databases empower businesses to streamline operations, enhance decision-making, and foster seamless collaboration with other entities.
This article was published as a part of the Data Science Blogathon.What is Database?
A data base is a structured collection of data organized and stored systematically, typically in a digital format. It is a repository for storing and managing large amounts of information, such as text, numbers, images, and multimedia files. They provide a means to store, retrieve, update, and analyze data efficiently. They maintain data integrity, ensure consistency, and facilitate efficient data processing. A data base consists of tables composed of rows (records) and columns (fields) representing different entities and attributes. With the help of a data base management system (DBMS), users can interact with the data, perform queries, and manipulate information for various applications and business needs.
Also Read: Beginners Guide to DatabaseHistory of Data Base Management System Data Base Components
Database components work together to provide a robust and efficient data base system, allowing for effective storage, management, and retrieval of data for various applications and users. Here are some of the most common ones:Tables
Tables are the fundamental building blocks of a data base. They represent the structured format for organizing and storing data. Tables consist of rows (records) and columns (fields) defining the data structure and attributes of the stored entities.Schema
The schema defines the logical structure and organization of the data base. It specifies the tables, their relationships, and the constraints that govern the data. The schema acts as a blueprint for data storage and defines the data types, primary keys, foreign keys, and other constraints.Queries
Queries retrieve, manipulate, and analyze data stored in the data base. They allow users to extract specific information based on criteria, perform calculations, and aggregate data.Indexes
Indexes are data structures that improve the speed of data retrieval operations. They provide a quick reference to the location of data within a table, allowing for faster search and retrieval based on specific columns or keys.Database Management System (DBMS)
The DBMS is the software that manages the database. It provides an interface for users to interact with the database, handles data storage, retrieval, and manipulation, enforces security and access controls, and ensures data integrity and consistency.Data Manipulation Language (DML)
DML is a language that enables users to insert, update, delete, and modify data in the database. Common DML languages include SQL (Structured Query Language).Data Definition Language (DDL)
DDL is a language used to define the structure and properties of the data base. It includes commands for creating tables, defining relationships, setting constraints, and managing the schema.Data Backup and Recovery
Data base systems often provide mechanisms for backing up data and restoring it in case of data loss or system failures. Backup strategies include full backups, incremental backups, and point-in-time recovery options.Security and Access Controls
Data base systems implement security measures to control access to data and ensure data privacy. User authentication, authorization, and encryption techniques are commonly employed to protect the integrity and confidentiality of the data.Data Integrity and Constraints
Databases enforce data integrity by applying constraints such as primary keys, foreign keys, unique constraints, and check constraints. These constraints ensure the consistency and validity of data stored in the data base.What is File System for Data Storage?
In File System, data is stored on a computer’s hard disk. The file system is a way of organizing files and directories on a computer. It is responsible for keeping track of where files are on the hard disk and how they are organized.
The file system is divided into the directory structure and the file data. The directory structure is a hierarchy of directories containing information about the files in each. The file data is the actual data that is stored in the files.
There are many different file systems, but they all essentially perform the same primary function: they allow you to store and organize your files. Some file systems are designed for specific operating systems, while others are cross-platform.Difference Between Data Base & File System
There are many differences between databases and file systems. Still, the most fundamental difference is that databases are designed to store data in a structured way, while file systems are designed to store data in an unstructured way.
Databases are typically organized around data models, which define the structure of the data and the relationships between different pieces of data. This structure makes it easy to query the data and find the information you need.
On the other hand, file systems are designed to store data in a flat, unstructured way. It makes it difficult to query the data and find the needed information. Another difference between databases and file systems is that databases are typically designed to be accessed by multiple users simultaneously. In contrast, file systems are designed to be accessed by a single user simultaneously. Databases usually have locking and concurrency control to prevent data corruption, while file systems typically do not.
Source: EducbaTypes of Databases 1. Relational Databases
Relational databases store data in tables. Tables are a type of data structure that store data in rows and columns. Rows represent records, and columns represent fields. It often store data that SQL can query. SQL is a language that is used to query data in relational databases. They are a powerful way to store data. They are easy to query, and we can use them to keep a large amount of data.Where can we use Relational Databases?
Websites: SQL data bases can be used to store data for a website. This data can include user information, such as name and contact information, and website content, such as articles or blog posts.
Mobile apps: SQL data bases can power mobile apps. This data can include user information, such as name and contact information, and app content, such as articles or blog posts.
Businesses: SQL data bases can be used to run a business. This data can include customer information, such as name and contact information, as well as product information, such as inventory levels and pricing.Limitations
SQL data bases are limited in their ability to scale horizontally. It means they cannot distribute data efficiently across multiple servers. It can be a problem when dealing with large amounts of data or when trying to provide high availability. Another limitation of SQL data bases is that they are not as flexible as NoSQL data bases regarding schema changes. Changing your data model without taking your data base offline can make it challenging.
You have heard the term “Scaling database horizontally” in the above paragraph. It means distributing the load to multiple servers. Let’s dive deep into it and learn more about Database Scaling.Database Scaling
Most people are familiar with the concept of scaling a database vertically. It means adding more resources to an existing data base server to increase performance, which might involve adding more RAM, a faster CPU, or storage.
Horizontal scaling is different. Rather than adding more resources to a single server, horizontal scaling involves adding more servers to a database cluster. We can do it by adding read-only replicas of the data base to different servers. Or, it can include sharding the data base, which means splitting the data into smaller pieces and storing it on other servers.
Which approach is best depends on the situation? Vertical scaling can be easier to implement and can be less expensive. But, it eventually reaches a point where adding more resources to a single server is no longer feasible. At that point, horizontal scaling becomes a necessary solution.2. NoSQL Databases
NoSQL databases does not use the traditional table-based relational database model. Instead, NoSQL databases are designed to be scalable and flexible, and they use a variety of data models, including key-value stores, document, column-oriented and graph data bases.Where can we use NoSQL Databases?
e ideal for storing large amounts of data. They are designed to scale horizontally, meaning they can easily add more nodes to the system as needed.
Handling high traffic: They are also suitable for handling high traffic. It is because they are designed to be highly available, meaning they can keep running even if one or more nodes go down.
Processing real-time data: They are also suitable for real-time processing data. It is because they are highly scalable, meaning they can easily add more nodes to the system as needed.Limitations
NoSQL databases have many benefits, but they also have some limitations. One significant rule is that they are not well-suited for transactions that span multiple records. It do not support joins, which are necessary for transactions that update multiple records. Another limitation is that NoSQL data bases can be less consistent than traditional relational databases. It often do not enforce data integrity rules, such as foreign key constraints. Finally, it can be more difficult to query than relational databases. They often do not support standard query languages, such as SQL.
Source: educba3. Graph Databases
A graph database is a database that represents and stores data using graph topologies with nodes, edges, and characteristics, enabling semantic searches. A crucial system idea is that the graph directly links data elements in the storage. We may immediately link data in the store together thanks to the relationships, and in many situations, we can access it with only one action. Although they have a distinct data model, graph databases are comparable to relational databases.Where can we use Graph Databases?
There are a few different graph databases, and each has its use cases. Here are some examples of where you might use a graph database:
Social media networks use graph databases to map out relationships between users.
Fraud detection systems use graph databases to identify behavior patterns that may indicate fraudulent activity.
Recommendation engines use graph databases to find similar items and recommend them to users.
Networking and IT systems use graph databases to map out and visualize complex relationships between data.Limitations
There are a few potential limitations of graph databases to be aware of:
They can be more complex to query than other databases. It is because you often have to traverse the graph to find the data you’re looking for, which can be time-consuming.
It can be more challenging to scale than other databases. Because each node in the graph is connected to other nodes, adding more nodes can quickly become complicated.
They can be less reliable than other types of databases. It is because the data in a graph database is often spread across many different nodes, making it challenging to keep track of everything.
Source: singhnaveenOther Popular Databases 4. Object-Oriented Databases
These databases store objects, attributes, and methods, making them suitable for object-oriented programming. They enable complex data structures and support inheritance and encapsulation. Examples include db4o and Versant.5. Hierarchical Databases
Hierarchical databases organize data in a tree-like structure, where each record has a parent-child relationship. They are suitable for storing data with one-to-many relationships. IBM’s Information Management System (IMS) is an example of a hierarchical database.6. Network Databases
Network databases are similar to hierarchical databases but allow for more complex relationships, such as many-to-many. They use a network model to represent data and are useful for handling interconnected data. Integrated Data Store (IDS) is an example of a network database.7. Columnar Databases 8. Spatial Databases
Spatial databases store and query spatial or geographical data, allowing for efficient storage and retrieval of location-based information. PostGIS and Oracle Spatial are examples of spatial databases.Applications of Database
Databases find applications in a wide range of industries and domains where efficient data storage, management, and retrieval are crucial. Here are some common applications of databases:Enterprise Systems
Databases are the backbone of enterprise systems such as customer relationship management (CRM), enterprise resource planning (ERP), and supply chain management (SCM) systems. They store and manage large volumes of data related to customers, sales, inventory, transactions, and more.E-commerce
Databases power online shopping platforms, managing product catalogs, customer profiles, orders, payments, and inventory. They enable efficient search, personalized recommendations, and smooth transaction processing.Financial Systems
Banks, financial institutions, and insurance companies rely on databases to store and manage customer accounts, transactions, loan information, claims data, and risk analysis.Healthcare
Databases are integral to healthcare systems, maintaining patient records, medical histories, diagnostic reports, and treatment information. They support clinical decision-making, research, and data analysis for improved patient care.Education Management
Educational institutions use databases to manage student information, course catalogs, schedules, grades, and academic records. They facilitate student enrollment, progress tracking, and administrative processes.Human Resources
Databases store employee data, payroll information, performance records, and benefits details. They streamline HR processes, facilitate talent management, and support workforce analytics.Social Media Logistics and Transportation
Databases are vital in logistics and transportation systems, managing inventory, tracking shipments, optimizing routes, and scheduling deliveries.Research and Scientific Applications
Databases support scientific research by storing experimental data, genomic information, research publications, and collaboration records. They facilitate data sharing, analysis, and knowledge discovery.Government and Public Sector
Databases assist government agencies in managing citizen information, public records, taxation data, land records, and administrative processes.Examples of Databases
There are many examples of famous databases, but here are a few of the most popular:
DatabaseDescriptionOracleWidely used relational database management systemMySQLOpen-source relational database management systemMicrosoft SQL ServerRelational database management system by MicrosoftMongoDBNoSQL database for handling unstructured dataPostgreSQLOpen-source relational database management systemCassandraDistributed NoSQL database for scalabilityRedisIn-memory data structure store and cacheSQLiteLightweight, embedded relational database systemAmazon AuroraCloud-native relational database serviceNeo4jGraph database for managing interconnected data1. MySQL
A free and open-source database management system is MySQL. Some of the biggest websites in the world, including Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube, use it as a standard option for online apps.
MySQL is a database management system developed in C and C++ on most operating systems. The most widely used database management system for PHP is MySQL.
A relational database management system is MySQL (RDBMS). Tables are used in relational databases to hold data. In a file system, tables function similarly to folders in that each table contains a collection of data.
We may utilize the robust MySQL database system for a variety of purposes. It has many functions and is simple to use.2. PostgreSQL
With over 30 years of ongoing development, PostgreSQL is a powerful open-source object-relational database system built with a solid reputation for dependability, feature robustness, and speed.
PostgreSQL is an excellent choice for a database for several reasons:
It is free and open source.
It has a strong community of developers and users.
It is very stable and has a track record of handling high-traffic websites.
It supports a wide variety of data types, including geographic data.3. Oracle Database
Oracle Database is a robust, reliable, and scalable relational database management system. It is the industry’s leading database, with over 400,000 customers worldwide. Oracle Database is used by some of the world’s largest organizations, including many Fortune 500 companies.4. Cassandra Database
Cassandra is a NoSQL database that provides high availability and linear scalability. It is a distributed database designed to handle large amounts of data across many commodity servers while providing high availability with no single point of failure. Cassandra is an open-source project that is part of the Apache Foundation.
Cassandra features a ColumnFamily data model that allows for flexible data schema. Cassandra also has a built-in MapReduce framework that makes it easy to perform data analytics. Cassandra is written in Java and has been ported to other languages such as C++, Python, and Go.
Cassandra is used by some of the largest companies in the world, including Netflix, Facebook, and eBay. Cassandra has been proven to scale to handle massive data sets with very high availability.
Source: cassandra.apache.org5. MongoDB
MongoDB is a powerful document-oriented database system. It has an index-based search feature that makes data retrieval quick and easy. MongoDB also offers a scalability feature, allowing it to handle extensive scale data.6. Microsoft SQL Server
Microsoft created the relational database management system known as Microsoft SQL Server. It is a software product known as a database server. Its main job is to store and retrieve data when other software programs, which may operate on the same computer or a different machine over a network, require it (including the Internet). A part of the Microsoft Windows Server operating system is Microsoft SQL Server.
SQL Server 2023 introduces a new deployment option: Stretch Database. Stretch Database dynamically stretches your on-premises SQL Server databases to Azure. By dynamically extending the warm and cold transactional data in your databases to Azure, Stretch Database enables your applications to continue to access their data, even when it is moved to Azure.
SQL Server 2023 also introduces several other exciting new features:
Polybase enables you to query data stored in Hadoop clusters using the same Transact-SQL language used to query relational data in SQL Server.
Always Encrypted protects your most sensitive data, such as credit card and banking information.Using Databases to Improve Business Performance and Decision-Making
Databases play a crucial role in improving business performance and decision-making by providing a reliable and organized repository of data. Here are some ways in which databases contribute to enhancing business outcomes:Data Centralization
Data bases allow businesses to centralize their data, consolidating information from various sources into a single, unified location. This facilitates easy access, eliminates data silos, and promotes consistency and integrity.Efficient Data Management
Data bases provide robust tools and functionalities for data management, including data storage, retrieval, update, and deletion. By organizing data in a structured manner, businesses can efficiently handle large volumes of information and ensure its accuracy and reliability.Enhanced Data Analysis Business Intelligence and Reporting
Data bases integrate with business intelligence tools and reporting systems to generate meaningful insights and reports. By leveraging database-driven analytics, businesses can identify patterns, trends, and opportunities, enabling them to make informed strategic decisions.Real-time Data Processing
Data bases equipped with transaction processing capabilities allow businesses to process and update data in real time. This is particularly valuable in scenarios where immediate data availability is critical, such as online transactions, inventory management, or customer support.Improved Collaboration
Data bases enable multiple users or departments to access and share data securely. This fosters collaboration and enables cross-functional teams to work together, leveraging a unified source of information.Streamlined Operations
By maintaining accurate and up-to-date data, data bases streamline business operations. From inventory to customer relationship management, databases ensure that relevant information is readily available, minimizing errors, redundancies, and inefficiencies.Data Security and Compliance
Data bases provide mechanisms to enforce data security measures, including access controls, encryption, and auditing. They help businesses comply with data protection regulations and safeguard sensitive information.Scalability and Performance
Data bases handle large volumes of data and support scalability. As businesses grow and data requirements increase, databases can accommodate expanding datasets and deliver optimal performance.Integration with Applications
Data bases seamlessly integrate with various business applications, allowing for data exchange and synchronization. This integration enhances operational efficiency and ensures data consistency across systems.Conclusion
In this article, we have talked about the various types of databases, their use, and also their limitations. Other than this, there are more types of databases, like Map-Reduce Databases or XML Databases; we will discuss them in upcoming articles.
We have seen above that no database is perfect. All of them have their benefits and limitations. An ideal database must be able to store data without any loss or corruption. It must be able to retrieve data perfectly and accurately. It must be able to update data ideally without any loss or corruption. Lastly, it must be able to delete data ideally without any loss or corruption.
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AG AI stands for Artificial Intelligence for Agriculture, and that’s what we’re doing. Farming and bringing crops to market is a difficult business, which involves, among other things, managing complex biological systems and understanding how they respond to their environment. One project we’re currently working on at Pavo helps farmers develop a better understanding of what drives crop yield for hazelnut orchards. We’re using big data and machine learning techniques to expand the possibilities in prediction and proactive crop management.Biological Complexity Captured
Trees are complex and each is a unique biological organism – no two are the same. The way a tree responds to its environmental variables and their individual impact on its yield is convoluted and intertwined; our models must reflect this hidden complexity. Capturing this diversity is an important part in understanding yield and an orchard’s response to its environment. We’re gathering information and, through the power of big data, developing models at an individual tree level using decades of historical information. A tree’s response to its local conditions is modeled, leveraging a combination of methods like neural nets (a.k.a. deep learning) and classical time series methods. We then scale these tree-level models to understand and predict the behavior of an entire orchard with all its biological diversity of possible outcomes. After our models are built, all that is required for a prediction of yield is a reasonable estimate of the expected future conditions.Hyper-local Information
Using Pavo’s network of sensors we’re able to measure the environmental conditions affecting crops closer to their point of impact – as localized as at an individual tree. This precision helps us reduce uncertainty in our yield predictions due to errors in the model inputs. Combining automated sensor data with decades of historical information on nut yields, collected with the same degree of precision, has created an extremely powerful dataset from which to construct models. We’re able to more accurately predict and understand the impact of varying environmental conditions and weather scenarios on orchards through highly localized and precise measurements of both the input conditions and output nut yield. We’re leveraging a combination of methods like neural nets (a.k.a. deep learning) and classical time series analysis to capture a tree’s response to its local conditions. We then scale these tree-level models to understand and predict the behavior of an entire orchard with all its biological diversity of possibilities and outcomes.Making Use of Community Feedback
In addition to the power of data harvested from our network of sensors, we’re collecting feedback and information from our community of experts and local farmers. This information is used to refine our understanding of not only what affects an orchard but to what degree it will impact a particular crop. It’s good to know when frost will occur, but even better if you can tell when it will have a minor or severe impact on your yield. We use the expertise and feedback from our community of users to continually evolve and enhance the power of our predictions. We’re combining state-of-the-art data science techniques with our ability to collect precision data, and developing models that allow farmers to prepare for whatever Mother Nature may bring. And we’re taking these models even further, applying and adapting them to indoor agriculture for produce crops, like spinach, lettuce and strawberries, to ensure that the world’s farmers can continue to feed a growing global population. We believe that technology has an increasingly important role to play in meeting the rapidly increasing caloric demand, and our IoT blockchain solution is up to the task.The Future – Bringing it Indoors
Ryan Haines / Android Authority
Garmin Body Battery is a feature on Garmin devices that aims to offer insight into your energy and readiness for training. The feature is available on a number of watches from the company. But is it really a useful feature? How does it work? Allow us to explain.How Garmin Body Battery works
According to Garmin’s website, Body Battery combines heart rate variability (HRV), stress, and activity data to calculate the user’s likely energy reserves. It uses this information to generate a number between 1-100.
Garmin Body Battery levels:
0-25: Low reserve energy
26-50: Medium reserve energy
51-75: High reserve energy
76-100: Very high reserve energy
HRV is a useful measurement of sympathetic nervous system dominance. The sympathetic nervous system is responsible for the “fight or flight” response and is associated with increased heart rate, suppressed immunity, digestion, and anxiety, among other things. Normally, when we exhale, we become slightly more parasympathetic, meaning our body slightly relaxes. This is indicated by a slight decrease in heart rate, providing us with “variability.”
If the heart rate does not change as much during exhalation — if variability is low — it suggests the body is too stressed to calm itself down. This tends to correlate with physiological arousal, illness, toxicity, psychological stress, hunger, or incomplete recovery.
Activity and stress
Garmin says HRV data is then combined with stress. This is derived from the HRV data, but it’s possible to see how the two metrics interact in the screenshots (above). Broadly, more stress = a rapidly draining battery, as you would expect.
Additionally, activity levels can help to contextualize this data. If you have been training intensively for five days in a row, there is a higher likelihood that you should be tired.
Above all else, listen to what your body is telling you about your recovery.
Moreover, Body Battery is primarily a reflection of HRV. While the score might also take other factors into account, such as activity and sleep, these should already be reflected in your HRV.
Nor is this feature entirely unique. Other devices, such as the Oura Ring 3 or WHOOP Strap, have a similar ability to measure HRV and output a “readiness” score. Fitbit also debuted a similar feature called Daily Readiness Score on the Fitbit Charge 5, which has since landed on its premium smartwatches and the Google Pixel Watch.
Body Battery also requires the user to wear the device consistently, including at night, with only short breaks to charge. When you stop using the tool, you will see dotted lines appear on the graph. This indicates estimated values generated by combining population data and individual trends. If you stop wearing the watch for several hours, however, it will reset the score. In other words? Body Battery is a commitment if you want to see the most accurate information. This will be off-putting to some users, especially those that own the bulkier Garmin products or dedicated running watches.
Garmin devices with Body Battery
Jimmy Westenberg / Android Authority
If you want to give Garmin Body Battery a try, you can find it on any of the following compatible devices:
Once you begin wearing the device, it can take 5-7 days for it to learn your habits and adapt accordingly.
More reading: A primer on Garmin’s heart rate zones
Top Garmin Body Battery questions and answers
Garmin’s Body Battery is a feature that calculates your body’s energy reserves throughout the day based on several factors. It uses heart rate variability, stress, and activity to calculate a score between 1 and 100. The higher the number, the more energy you have.
Based on our experience, Garmin’s Body Battery is a remarkably accurate and easily digestible representation of energy levels.
Low Body Battery scores may be down to lifestyle factors, including poor sleep, alcohol consumption, or incessant stress. Current factors, like illness, can also affect the score.
The Body Battery only charges when you’re completely at rest. This means it’s less likely to recharge during the day unless you take a nap or are completely at ease.
According to Garmin, getting a good night’s sleep is integral to a high Body Battery score the following day. You should also eat healthily, get enough exercise, and avoid stressors.
Jimmy Westenberg / Android Authority
You may have heard of a feature called ECG (or EKG) making its way onto wearables. Devices such as the Samsung Galaxy Watch 5, Apple Watch Series 8, Withings Scanwatch, and several other smartwatches, now come with an ECG sensor baked in. Find out what you need to know about ECG technology and why it matters in consumer wearables.
What is ECG?
Jimmy Westenberg / Android Authority
Short for electrocardiogram, an ECG is a test that measures the heart’s electrical activity. It is an easy, noninvasive way for a medical team to detect common heart problems. These can include everything from irregular heart rhythms (arrhythmias) to potentially blocked or clogged arteries. Your doctor may also use an ECG if you have previously had a heart attack or if you are experiencing concerning symptoms such as heart palpitations, a rapid pulse, or chest pain. Similarly, patients who have received heart-related treatments, such as the addition of a pacemaker, may have an ECG used to see how their health is progressing.
An electrocardiogram records the electrical signals produced by the heart. With each beat, an electrical wave causes your heart to contract and pump blood to the rest of the body. An ECG measures this electrical wave to help determine the strength and activity of your heart. Plotting these electrical signals in a graph, an ECG produces a reviewable electrocardiogram. Analyzing this graphical representation of the electrical activity in the heart (and the time between heartbeats) can help determine if your heart’s activity is normal, slow, fast, or irregular. It can also tell if parts of the heart are too large or overworked.
Also read: The best heart rate monitors and watchesECG vs. EKG: Is there a difference?
The only difference between ECG vs. EKG is the spelling of the abbreviation. ECG is an abbreviation for electrocardiogram or electrocardiograph — both English words — while EKG is an abbreviation for the German spelling of elektrokardiogramm. Functionally, electrocardiogram sensors and elektrokardiogramm sensors are the same.How does it work?
In the past, this technology was exclusively used by medical professionals to evaluate patients. In an exam room or even in an ambulance, a medical technician attaches ten adhesive electrode patches to a patient’s chest, arms, and legs through this process. These patches connect the patient to a machine that interprets and displays the heart’s electrical patterns for a doctor to evaluate. The process is straightforward and completely painless.
So, if this way of performing an ECG is so simple, why do we need it on wearable technology? For starters, people with heart issues frequently need to monitor their heart health. If you can’t see your doctor right away, this can be difficult. Buying a wearable with an ECG sensor is a good way to keep an eye on things without setting up doctor appointments every other week.
Importantly, a wrist-based ECG is by no means a replacement for a professional medical ECG test. It may be helpful in some circumstances, but you should always consult your doctor regarding heart health.
Are there any downsides to ECG watches?
Kaitlyn Cimino / Android Authority
Now that we’re seeing Fitbit, Apple, Withings, and other companies integrate ECG sensors into their wearables, why doesn’t every smartwatch come with one? There are a few reasons. First, ECGs in consumer-grade wearables are certainly a niche feature. If you don’t have heart issues, you may not ever use your wearable’s ECG. Companies that make wearables know this, which is why we don’t see ECGs tacked onto every single smartwatch.
Additionally, to sell a wearable with an ECG, the sensor needs to receive medical clearance. ECGs need to be FDA certified in the US, while CE clearance is needed in Europe. We’ve seen this approval process completely halt devices from launching in certain regions.
The Withings Scanwatch, which was announced in January 2023, only gained approval by the FDA for sale in the US in October 2023. This came months after it gained CE clearance in Europe. Fitbit also ran into the issue with the Fitbit Sense. It actually launched the smartwatch on time in the US, though FDA clearance came a few months later. ECG functionality rolled out to the watch in October 2023.
Beyond government setbacks, some companies have imposed limitations on these sensors. Samsung, for instance, has made the ECG found in Galaxy Watch 5 and 4 series devices exclusive to those with Samsung phones. If you own another Android device, you won’t gain access to the sensor. Additionally, it’s worth mentioning that not all ECG sensors are made equal. The Coros Vertix 2‘s sensor only records heart rate variability values, and there’s no way to view the device’s actual ECG data readouts.
Which wearables have ECG sensors?
C. Scott Brown / Android AuthorityWhy should you consider buying an ECG watch?
Wrist-based ECG is primarily for people who need to evaluate their heart patterns regularly. Maybe someone has a heart arrhythmia or atrial fibrillation (AFib) they need to monitor. Perhaps they’ve previously suffered from a heart attack and are now hoping their wearable can catch any irregularities before it’s too late. Maybe heart issues run in their family, and this is one easy step they can take to be proactive.
In the end, if you are reading this article because you didn’t know what an ECG was, you probably don’t need one on you at all times. But for some, this functionality could be revolutionary, if for nothing more than peace of mind.FAQs
An ECG may be used to detect a number of complications including arrhythmias, coronary artery disease, or a past or current heart attack.
If you experience chest pain, dizziness, confusion, shortness of breath, weakness/fatigue or the inability to exercise, heart palpitations, or a rapid pulse you may need to speak to your doctor about potential heart health concerns.
At a doctor’s office, ECG tests will generally take between five and ten minutes to perform.
Music streaming services like Spotify offer fantastic value for the money, but what if a family plan is too big for you, and you don’t want to pay double the price of a single subscription? Spotify Duo may be precisely what you need if that sounds like you.What Is Spotify Duo?
Spotify Duo is simply a subscription tier that provides a Spotify Premium account to two people at a lower cost than either two individual Premium subscriptions or the Premium Family Plan, which provides Spotify Premium for six people.
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Spotify Duo costs $12.99 a month. In contrast, a single subscription plan costs $9.99, and the Family Plan comes in at $14.99. So you save a lot compared to the $20 for both individual subscriptions. It’s only two dollars cheaper than the family plan, and you lose four subscription slots. However, if you only need Spotify for two people, there’s little reason to pay the extra two bucks.
One cool feature of Spotify Duo is that you can have a “Duo mix” shared playlist with the other person, similar to the “family mix” of the top-tier option.
There are terms and conditions for Spotify Duo. The subscription is meant for two people who live in the same household. So couples, roommates, or other pairs of people who live together at the same address are eligible. If you live at different addresses, you’re not supposed to use Spotify Duo.Spotify Duo Eligibility in Detail
There are three main requirements that anyone who uses Spotify Duo must fulfill to be eligible.
The first is that both the “primary” account holder and the “subsidiary” account holder must reside at the same physical address.
The second requirement is that both account holders provide their home addresses. If the two addresses don’t match, you can’t use Duo.
You also have to agree to the possibility that you may be asked to verify your addresses again from time to time.
Spotify’s terms and conditions state that they reserve the right to suspend or cancel your Duo subscription if they believe you aren’t sticking to the rules.The Perks of Spotify Premium
Whichever of the Premium subscription tiers you choose, you’re getting the same perks, but what are they? Why not just use Spotify’s free tier?
The free version of Spotify also doesn’t allow you to control which songs are being played. You get a limited number of skips, so this experience is more radio-like than the premium option and may not suit your musical tastes.
Overall, we consider Spotify’s free tier too limited to be a primary music streaming service. For a more detailed evaluation of Spotify Premium, check out Is Spotify Premium Worth it?When Is the Family Plan Better?
If you have more than two people who want Spotify Premium, the Family plan is by far the cheapest way to do it. Even if you only use three of the six slots, it’s still a better deal. Of course, the more people on your family plan, the cheaper it works out on a per-person basis.Spotify Account-sharing Enforcement
Of course, when using a family plan (or Duo), you may be tempted to split the cost with people who don’t live with you. If you do this, you violate the terms and conditions and risk getting your account suspended.
Spotify icon. Green Spotify logo. Spotify vector logo on isolated background for your design. Vector EPS 10
It’s unclear how exactly Spotify would detect and enforce these rules. In 2023, Spotify experimented with GPS-based validation, but this idea is no longer in effect now.
Just be aware that, in the future, you’ll have no recourse if Spotify does decide to enforce its policies.Spotify Duo Alternatives
There are many other streaming services to choose from these days, but none of them offer a direct competitor to Duo at the time of writing. While services like Apple Music, Amazon Music, or YouTube Music offer single- and family- subscriptions, you won’t find two-person options.
Of course, if you’re already a Spotify user and simply want to add one person to your subscription, you already know that you’re happy with what the service offers.
It’s only an issue when you’re deciding between different services before taking the plunge. There’s more to consider than just pure price.
For example, YouTube Premium includes both ad-free YouTube and a music service.
Additionally, it’s essential to subscribe to the service that hosts the music you want to listen to. If your favorite artist isn’t on Spotify, you’ll have to go elsewhere.Is Spotify Premium Duo for You?
With all the relevant information on the table, it’s time to figure out if the Spotify Premium Duo plan is right for you instead of having separate accounts.
If you’re two people living at the same address who want Spotify Premium, put a tick in the “yes” column. If you’re happy with it, it’s a great deal.
One small caveat is that the primary account holder is responsible for the whole bill. So if you’re splitting the cost with someone, you’ll have to put up the cash and get it back from them. If you’re a secondary account user, just remember that the primary account holder has the power to kick you off. So be nice to them!
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