Find yourself losing focus when you're trying to get work done? A new Kickstarter project wants to use sound to condition your brain to get back to work.
Mindset is a successfully funded Kickstarter project that has managed to raise well more than its $100,000 goal in a short period of time. It's a pair of headphones that come equipped with an electroencephalogram, or EEG, which is used to monitor your brainwaves in real time, and it can tell when your mind is focused and when it's not. Wearing the headphones, you can listen to your music to drown out other distractions -- but if you do manage to get distracted the headset will know, and will offer up an audible notification to bring your focus back to what's important.
The company claims that over time, these audible notifications will "rewire your brain" to better tune out distractions. This is done in part through machine learning, as Mindset analyzes your data to help understand when you're most focused in the course of the day, and when you're not. This eventually allows you to plan your day to fit your cycle of concentration -- you can work on more important tasks during your peak hours of focus, and perhaps unwind a little more at times when you tend to be more distracted and less able to concentrate.
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The final design of Mindset is sleek and professional-looking. While I can't say it's comfortable as we tested a prototype that didn't have the same padding, it did immediately offer personalized results based on my brainwaves. What's neat is the company will offer multiple accounts, so you can lend Mindset to anyone and it won't affect your profile, and they will still be able to see personalized results.
One of the caveats is that to have your data measured and analyzed, you need to wear Mindset as much as possible. This means that the device really only applies to students and people who can wear headphones in the workplace for long periods of time. Also, there's no companion app yet, and you'll have to use a web portal to see your data.
Headphones need to offer great sound, especially if, like these, they're estimated to retail for around $350. That's why the Mindset team partnered with Onkyo to offer a solid listening experience. You'll also find the headphones are equipped with Bluetooth and active noise canceling to help drain out distractions. Now that the project has been funded, the company is looking to fund stretch goals like an integrated microphone in Mindset so it can take voice calls.
You can grab Mindset headphones for as low as $250 on Kickstarter. Its expected shipping date is December 2017.