Editor’s Note: Third Wave Fashion helps fashion brands, technology companies, and publishers do amazing things in the quickly merging worlds of fashion and tech, and publish a print magazine about fashion tech, the future of commerce, and wearables. The following is a post shared from the fashion tech think tank. Check back soon for more TWF interviews.
Now here’s something truly new: A piece of wearable tech that keeps both your body and your mind fit. There are a lot of fitness wearables out there that help consumers track their vitals, but we found a company that created a fitness tool that uses your brain waves to achieve the same goals, but with more benefits. We got the scoop on the Muse headband straight from InteraXon’s CEO and Co-founder, Ariel Garten.
Muse, the brain-sensing headband by InteraXon, is a brain fitness tool that helps you do more with your mind, and more with your life. Muse detects your brain signals during a focused-attention exercise the same way a heart rate monitor detects your heart rate during physical exercise. This measurement gives you valuable in the moment feedback that you can use to train your brain today, and over time, to reduce stress, increase focus and productivity and improve cognitive function through guided exercises with the Calm app (available on iTunes + Google Play).
What was your inspiration behind creating Muse?
To begin with, I had an entire team and my co-founders building Muse with me. For us as a whole, our inspiration was about helping people understand and know their own mind. For me, in particular, my inspiration was helping women know that they don’t need to be held back by the voices in their head, the thoughts they have, and the negative dialogue that we use to beat ourselves up. Women are always trying to be perfect, to look our best, to be our best while in reality we are our best.
There is nothing that we as women need to do to try to get there; but we have these voices that push and tell us that we are not doing well enough. This causes us insecurity, anxiety, and low self-esteem. Women end up afraid of really acting and doing what we need to do in this world. So my motivation was to help people, women in particular, to stop beating themselves up, to shut down those voices, and be free to accomplish and achieve, with glorious peaceful confidence, what they want to in their own lives.
What sets Muse apart from other wearables?
Other wearables tend to be tech focused devices that track your body movement, or wearables that are focused on being a raw computer that does something for you. Muse doesn’t deal with your body; it deals with something far more important: your mind. Muse is the only wearable that helps you track your brain activity, master your own mind, and manage your own emotional state so that you can be more responsive (rather than reactive) and can take control of your mind and your life.
What has been one of the most challenging parts of getting started? How did you overcome this and what did you learn?
Building a wearable is very difficult, and for Muse, in particular, it had to be something that was phenomenal. It had to get great signal and quality from EEG (very, very tiny electrical signal that comes off your brain activity) in real time. It needed to be perfect: it needed to be technically rigorous, scientifically valid and validated. Our wearable needed something that was going to be a great emotional, human experience so that it would feel like an experience between you and yourself, rather than an experience with technology.
My own background in neuroscience and design was very helpful; our lead engineer, CTO and Co-founder, Chris Aimone, is a brilliant engineer, dancer and artist; and my entire team straddles between computer science, machine learning, engineering, and art-design user experience. We all build phenomenal things that work exceptionally well, are joys and pleasures to use, and feel like real human experiences.
Where can we buy your products, and what is the cost?
What can we expect next from Muse?
Muse is going to help you learn to meditate with guidance, real-time feedback, and will let you know if your mind is wandering. There will also be programs that use Muse that help you sleep, help your productivity, help you find me-time, and more.
To learn more, check out Muse here.