Sensory Perception & Interaction Research Group

University of British Columbia

Full citation: 
Karuei, I., Schneider, O., Stern, B., Chuang, M., MacLean, K.M., "RRACE: Robust Realtime Algorithm for Cadence Estimation," Pervasive and Mobile Computing, vol. 13, 2014, pp. 52-66.
We present an algorithm which analyzes walking cadence (momentary step frequency) via frequency-domain analysis of accelerometer signals available in common smartphones, and report its accuracy relative to the published state-of-the-art algorithms based on the data gathered in a controlled user study. We show that our algorithm (RRACE) is more accurate in all conditions, and is also robust to speed change and largely insensitive to orientation, location on person, and user differences. RRACE’s performance is suitable for interactive mobile applications: it runs in realtime (∼2 s latency), requires no tuning or a priori information, uses an extensible architecture, and can be optimized for the intended application. In addition, we provide an implementation that can be easily deployed on common smartphone platforms. Power consumption is measured and compared to that of the current commercially available mobile apps. We also describe a novel experiment design and analysis for verification of the best-optimized RRACE’s performance under different conditions, executed outdoors to capture normal walking. The resulting extensive dataset allowed a direct comparison (conditions fully matched) of RRACE variants with a published time-based algorithm. We have made this verification design and dataset publicly available, so it can be re-used for gait (general attributes of walking movement) and cadence measurement studies or gait and cadence algorithm verification.
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