The off-the-shelf availability of wearable devices and the commercial proliferation of wearable gadgets are shaping new directions for mobile and wireless systems research. Mobile systems and applications research is increasingly adopting wearable devices for primary and auxiliary sensing. This is an exciting time where wearables are also seeming to spearhead advancements in technology through inter-disciplinary research among a broad spectrum of disciplines apart from mobile wireless, such as health, fashion, energy, just to name a few.

The 5th ACM Workshop on wearable systems and applications, WearSys, is focused on how wearable technologies can shape mobile computing, systems and applications research. The goal of this workshop is to provide a forum to bring together researchers and design experts to discuss how wearable technologies have, and can, complement mobile systems research, and vice-versa. It also aims to provide a launchpad for bold and visionary ideas for wearable systems research. We hope that this workshop will serve as a catalyst for advancements in mobile and wearable systems technology as well as present a clear sense of direction for the research community to proceed in this space.


Steve Mann

Full professor at the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, with cross-appointments to the Faculty of Arts and Sciences and Faculty of Forestry at the University of Toronto
Keynote Title

Eye Itself as a Camera: Sensors, Integrity, and Trust

Keynote Abstract

Ayinography is the use of the eye itself as a camera. By recording brainwaves, we read the “mind’s eye”. Wearable ayinographic technology represents a new opportunity to solve an old problem: the lack of integrity inherent in the world around us. We live in a world of half-truths where incomplete evidence is collected about almost every facet of our lives. Wearable computing can and should provide the answer that allows us to capture and tell our own story, in a way that builds trust and integrity in service of truth, and ultimately, service of humanity through extended-reality intelligence (Human-in-the-loop AI). More generally we advocate whole truth through a full panoramic 360° wearable vision system (Teth VisionTM), and a complete understanding of fundamental physics through Integral Kinematics.

  • Visiting Full Professor, Stanford University, Department of Electrical Engineering, Room 216, 350 Serra Mall, Stanford, CA 94305.
  • Chair of the Silicon Valley Innovation & Entrepreneurship Forum (SVIEF).
  • Founding Member of the IEEE Council on Extended Intelligence.
  • Marquis Who's Who 2018 Albert Nelson Marquis Lifetime Achievement Award.

Invented wearable computing in his childhood, brought this invention to MIT to found the MIT wearable computing project, and "persisted in his vision and ended up founding a new discipline." -- Nicholas Negroponte, MIT Media Lab Director, 1997.

Invented, designed, and built the world's first smartwatch in 1998 (patent filed 1999, featured on cover of Linux Journal July 2000) which he presented at IEEE ISSCC 2000 where he was named "The father of the wearable computer".

Inventor of HDR (High Dynamic Range) imaging, used in more than 2 billion smartphones. ("The first report of digitally combining multiple pictures of the same scene to improve dynamic range appears to be Mann 1993" -- Robertson etal, JEI 12(2).) Originally developed HDR to help people see using his EyeTap Digital Eye Glass invention which predates the Google Glass by more than 30 years.

Founded companies with valuation in excess of $1 billion, together with students. (See

Josiah Hester

Assistant Professor of Computer Engineering at Northwestern University
Keynote Title

Why Wear a Battery? The Future of Wearables May be Batteryless

Keynote Abstract

Wearable devices are very promising for addressing a range of urgent needs in health and eldercare, safety, activity tracking, wellbeing, entertainment, and myriad other applications. By continuously sensing and analyzing data these platforms have also enabled a broad set of research paths in these same domains. Despite this wide usage, the current state of wearables has not yet met the vision that many hold, of unobtrusive devices that support our life and well-being in perpetuity without maintenance; finally realizing Weiser’s vision of invisible computing, where a person no longer need to manage or maintain personal devices. This next step in wearable technology requires re-imagining fundamental building blocks and assumptions held on what a wearable can do.. Many challenges exist, including security and privacy, usability, social stigma and pressure, and of course, energy. In this talk we focus on the problem of energy and device lifetime in wearable devices and contemplate what the requirements are to realize wearables that are truly maintenance free and last for decades. We first discuss early efforts to sustain long battery lifetimes on commodity hardware devices. We then question the role of batteries and build on recent work showing that energy harvesting and battery-free operation offer a tantalizing path towards a new generation of wearable computing. This talk will end with a discussion of the real challenges in realizing ubiquitous computing with battery-free wearables, the potential research paths, and the exciting applications we can begin to tackle.


Josiah Hester is an Assistant Professor in the Departments of Electrical and Computer Engineering, and Computer Science at Northwestern University. He directs Ka Moamoa, a mobile and ubiquitous computing lab. His work is funded by NSF and the Northwestern Institute on Complex Systems. His research enables sophisticated, sustainable sensing on the tiny devices at the edge of the Internet of Things, with application domains in wearables and health, infrastructure monitoring and even space exploration. Wearable platforms he has developed have been deployed on over 100 people in multiple studies with thousands of hours of worn sensor data. His work is published at USENIX ATC, ACM SenSys, and various prestigious journals, and has received a Best Paper Award and Best Paper Nomination from ACM SenSys, and two Best Poster Awards. He was also named the Outstanding PhD Student in Computer Science for 2016 by the School of Computing at Clemson University.


Best Paper Award
Towards Machine Learning with Zero Real-World Data

Cholmin Kang (SungKyunKwan University), Hyunwoo Jung (Seoul National University), Youngki Lee (Seoul National University)

Workshop room: ALLEGRO II
9:10 – 9:30, Opening
9:30 – 10:30, Opening keynote: Steve Mann - Teth Week, June 21-28: Wearable Sensors, Integrity, and Trust, for a Full-Truth
10:30 – 11:00, Coffee break
11:00 – 12:30, Session 1: Emerging applications and systems for wearables
  • A Mobility Evaluation of Tilt Panning and Offset Sensing Smart Watch Input

    HongMin Kim (Ulsan National Institute of Science and Technology), MyungSung Kim (Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology), Ian Oakley (Ulsan National Institute of Science and Technology)

  • Understanding the Predictability of Smartwatch Usage

    Yunsheng Yao (Indiana University & Amazon), Xing Liu (University of Minnesota), Feng Qian (University of Minnesota)

  • Wrist-worn Wearable Sensors to Understand Insides of the Human Body: Data Quality and Quantity

    Pekka Siirtola (University of Oulu), Ella Peltonen (University of Oulu), Heli Koskimäki (University of Oulu), Henna Mönttinen (University of Oulu), Juha Röning (University of Oulu), Susanna Pirttikangas (University of Oulu)

  • Protecting Visual Information in Augmented Reality from Malicious Application Developers

    Jk Jensen (Arizona State University), Jinhan Hu (Arizona State University), Amir Rahmati (Stony Brook University), Robert LiKamWa (Arizona State University)

  • WhereWear: Calibration-free Wearable Device Identification through Ambient Sensing

    Carlos Ruiz (Carnegie Mellon University), Shijia Pan (Carnegie Mellon University), Hae Young Noh (Carnegie Mellon University), Pei Zhang (Carnegie Mellon University)

12:30 – 14:00, Lunch
14:00 – 15:00, Closing keynote: Josiah Hester - Why Wear a Battery? The Future of Wearables May be Batteryless
15:00 – 15:20, Session 2: Are We There Yet?
  • Position: Smart KT Tape - A Bendable Wearable System for Muscle Fatigue Sensing

    Jun-An Chen (National Taiwan University), Cynthia Yun-Shin Liu (National Taiwan University), Hong Jhih Chen (National Taiwan University), Hsin-Yuan Chen (National Taiwan University), Hsea-Ching Hsueh (National Taiwan University), Yu-Chia Huang (National Taiwan University), Koji Yatani (University of Tokyo), Hao-Hua Chu (National Taiwan University), Polly Huang (National Taiwan University)

  • Position: Wearable Polymorphic Light Sensors

    Ambuj Varshney (Uppsala University)

  • Position: On the Use of Low-cost Sensors for Non-intrustive Newborn Sepsis Monitoring

    Paweeya Raknim (Rajamangala University of Technology Lanna), Kun-chan Lan (National Cheng Kung University), Yung-Chieh Lin (National Cheng Kung University Hospital), Yen-Tzu Lu (National Cheng Kung University)

15:20 – 16:00, Coffee break
16:00 – 17:30, Session 3: Novel hardware and machine learning for wearables
  • Towards Machine Learning with Zero Real-World Data

    Cholmin Kang (SungKyunKwan University), Hyunwoo Jung (Seoul National University), Youngki Lee (Seoul National University)

  • Cerebro: A Wearable Solution to Detect and Track User Preferences using Brainwaves

    Mohit Agarwal (Georgia Institute of Technology), Raghupathy Sivakumar (Georgia Institute of Technology)

  • Walk to Show Your Identity: Gait-based Seamless User Authentication Framework Using Deep Neural Network

    Duin Baek (Stony Brook University & SUNY Korea), Pratik Musale (Stony Brook University & SUNY Korea), Jihoon Ryoo (Stony Brook University & SUNY Korea)

  • Design Fiction for Real-World Connected Wearable

    Helen Oliver (The Alan Turing Institute & University of Cambridge)

  • Making Sensors Tangible with Long-exposure Photography

    Steve Mann (MannLab Canada), Diego Defaz (MannLab Canada), John Xu (MannLab Canada), Daryl Chua (MannLab Canada)

17:30 – 17:40, Closing

Call for Submissions

The ACM Workshop on wearable systems and applications (WearSys) is focused on wearable technologies that can shape mobile computing, systems andapplications research. WearSys will provide a venue forpresenting current research and technology trends, and debating future research agendas of wearable technology. It will provide a forum for discussing innovative ideas that have potential for significant impact. We solicit papers of six or fewer pages that present preliminary research in prototyping a wearable system, experience in designing a novel wearable technology, or survey of useful tools for designing interdisciplinary wearable systems and applications. We also encourage position papers that propose new directions for research or advocate disruptive design ideas and project applications. We also encourage submissions that can help bootstrap exploration of the wearable design space by the broader mobile systems community. The focus areas include, but not limited to:

  • Smart Glass, wearable imaging, projection devices
  • Wearable fashion (Smartwatch, wristbands, amulets, body suits)
  • Capacitive sensing and On-body communication
  • Wearable health and fitness activity tracking
  • Batteryless sensing and systems for wearables
  • Novel energy management solutions (e.g., swappable batteries, solar harvesting)
  • Ubiquitous Input Devices
  • Context sensitive notification delivery
  • Wearable biometrics for payment and authentication
  • Haptics and cognitive prosthetics
  • Body energy harnessing
  • Brain-interfaces
  • Electromyography (EMG) interfaces
  • Novel combinations of 3D printing and wearables (e.g., integration with custom 3D printed sensors/enclosures)
  • Wearable infrastructure and toolkits
Workshop papers will be included with the MobiSys proceedings and posted in the ACM Digital Library.
All accepted papers will be considered for the Best Paper Award and we will award one at the conference.

Submission Guidelines

We solicit submissions of ongoing and works with preliminary results that can generate significant interest and discussions at the workshop. Full paper submissions must be limited to 6 pages including references. Any topic related to Wearable systems and its Applications is in scope and is welcome for submission. We solicit two types of submissions:

Full Papers: Full paper submissions should be limited to 6 pages including references.

Position papers: We seek short descriptions (2 pages incl. references) of early-stage research ideas in general, but in particular those that point to future directions for the field, novel applications (especially novel applications/designs for wearables), or identify technologies that are ready for market adoption. The last case can be thought of as pitching a startup idea and making arguments for market adoption, though not a full business plan. Submission's title must be prefixed with "Position:".

All submissions must be original work not under review at any other workshop, conference, or journal. In accordance with MobiSys guidelines, WearSys will follow a double-blind submission policy. Submissions must follow the formatting guidelines at

Your submission must be in PDF. We will not accept the papers in any other format.
Submission link:

Important Dates

Submission deadline (paper, position): April 12th, 2019 (11:59:59pm AOE) Extended!
Notification of acceptance: April 29th, 2019
Camera-ready workshop papers: May 3rd, 2019
Workshop date: June 21st, 2019


Fahim Kawsar (Nokia Bell Labs, UK and TU Delft, Netherlands)

Chulhong Min (Nokia Bell Labs, UK)
Akhil Mathur (Nokia Bell Labs, UK)
Ashwin Ashok (Georgia State University, USA)

Alessandro Montanari (Nokia Bell Labs, UK)

Jie Liu (Microsoft Research)
Suman Banerjee (University Wisconsin Madison)
Mahadev Satyanarayanan (Carnegie Mellon University)
Mi Zhang (Michigan State University)
Kaspar Jansen (TU Delft)
Aswin Ashok (Georgia State University)

Utku Gunay Acer (Nokia Bell Labs, Belgium)
Inseok Hwang (IBM Research, USA)
Seungwoo Kang (KOREATECH, South Korea)
Kleomenis Katevas (Imperial College London, UK)
Youngki Lee (Seoul National University, South Korea)
Robert LiKamWa (Arizona State University, USA)
Cecilia Mascolo (University of Cambridge, UK)
Abhinav Mehrotra (University College London, UK)
Archan Misra (Singapore Management University, Singapore)
Tadashi Okoshi (Keio University, Japan)
Tauhidur Rahman (University of Massachusetts Amherst, USA)
Nirupam Roy (UMD College Park, USA)
Akira Uchiyama (Osaka University, Japan)
Kristof Van Laerhoven (Universty of Siegen, Germany)