Hey everyone, thanks for all of the support and for bearing with me on the rough edges. This is a passion project and I'm basically solo still, so all of your input makes a difference and will be honored. I'm an open book and you're all invited to participate in this process. What I'm doing is opening up a previously underserved area of Biofeedback and widely-applicable medical and fitness devices (the "poor man's fMRI" as Hershel Toomim called it), and I'm hoping to establish some kind of manufacturing for affordable devices. I want to see something that's $20-$50 on the market that's fully featured with tech no less than 3 years old (as that is currently very possible), since you can get an equivalent pulse oximeter for the same price or less. I don't really have a team for my specific goals in this space of providing dirt-cheap hardware and free software, so instead I'm working mutually with other businesses (right now my only competitors technically, but instead we're friends) while strictly pushing the open source model of my work for the most obvious and streamlined forms of this technology (i.e. the most massively applicable ones). This means others are free to iterate or make business on what I'm doing here while we help each other rise up and stay motivated. I have to work systematically and carefully to build this ship and make it sail, but it's gonna happen. This strategy has allowed me to work with next to nothing in terms of budget or even possessions and dedicate my life to learning and finding my way into the different related fields here for the better part of 2 years now. I wouldn't do anything else at this point.
I hope to end up with an organization that can expand this ethic into more areas, and do it co-operatively so we can get away from the vertically-integrated for-profit medical market (and all kinds of other snidely practices in the software and tech world used to turn a buck) while still properly incentivizing everyone involved. It's really pretty easy to do, the hard part is finding people with the integrity and the skills required to make it soar, and then the resources to support them due to how much energy this takes. I'm going at it from all angles with grant applications, looking for angel investors, the open hardware I am selling now, etc. I have a lot of people I can't thank enough for the support they've given me already, but I'm going to need a lot to take this into the next phases. I'll keep you all posted, it's all moving. :-)
So that's out of the way, let's talk timeline. You've all hopefully noticed by the big Alpha word pasted everywhere that we are in early development. We've published usable tools that get the job done though still need quite a bit of attention to detail so there's no place users can get frustrated or confused - or worst case, not get the brain training that this thing is meant to facilitate. A short timeline for what I'm hoping to accomplish over the coming weeks:
- Documenting everything, better formatted instructions + how-to videos.
- Tooltips and better navigation in the web software.
- Integrating a text scroll feedback mode as per request from Stephanie DuPont of BILA (already done, I just need to add some visual flare).
- Chrome app demonstration to add USB support for the webapp. Figure out easiest iOS support method (maybe a Nativescript package for the webview app)
- Demo a story-guided training method by Ben Hale that uses a derivative of the ratio.
- Show off website integration of the webapp, where you will be able to access the device directly from the site and upload data automatically.
- More aesthetic updates for the web interface
By end of April:
- More streamlining for the user experience. I need to find the best way to get users to connect their devices to their main networks without getting lost/confused. Might require a separate app, unless the community is fine learning some new tricks.
- General polish, I will hopefully be demonstrating the new hardware before May, which will allow much more interesting feedback.
- Build a team
- Build a final product
- Do some good for others.
And again I'm all open to suggestions or if you want to lend a hand or get involved in a bigger way. I'd like to be able to drop some clinical grade work on you all in short time, stuff I can provide free that looks professional and more to modern taste. I'm working with formal research notes and protocols to make sure it's something that a professional would get good use out of without over-complicating anything on the surface. I am working from the perspective of a game developer in terms of how to deliver a great user experience, so expect to see this all evolve significantly. I hope by the end I can give you something truly unique that dignifies what I believe is a powerful tool with a powerful message. We'll see how far I can get!