A couple of years ago, I joined www.openhumans.org. It is a program used by researchers and it allows every day people (like you and me) to help them with their research.
Last year, I joined "Go Viral." I was sent a kit and the next time I got the cold, I spit in a tube and sent it back to them.
For Channukah this year, Bill and the Rivster gave me a FitBit Flex. SO EXCITING! I love how helpful it's been, especially with figuring out my sleep patterns. I just discovered that I can connect my Fitbit to Open Humans and, in doing so, help a researcher in New York figure out how people exercise in their everyday lives. Go me.