Connected Objects Nutrition/Hydration

Chew your way to a healthier bod with this connected Spün

editors-choiceBecoming healthier need not be an exercise in extreme dieting, crazy weight loss supplements, and obsessive exercise despite what many people mistakenly think. While a dash of exercise a few times a week will definitely help, the biggest key to better health is simply eating better. And as it turns out, eating better is probably the hardest thing to consistently do well for most.

Manually keeping on top of everything eaten throughout the day is usually what turns most people off to the benefits of doing so. Spün, the connected calorie counting utensils, automatically does all the heavy lifting to leave users alone with their delicious meals. Spün works with its companion app to identify food being through a picture of the plate taken by the user. The app then communicates with Spün to keep track of both how much and how fast the meal is being eaten.

Food and Beverage

Forkeo adds a touch of sophistication to enjoying milk and cookies

One of the best combinations in life is Oreos and milk. Whoever thought of this was just a food genius. Some people enjoy the feel of a wet cookie in between their fingers and licking the chocolate crumbs off their fingertips in between each cookie. Some, however, do not.

Forkeo has great appeal to those who enjoy a cleaner dining experience. The two-pronged fork simply gets stuck into the icing in between the cookie parts and then dunked into one’s favorite glass or mug full of milk. While a regular fork works just a well, Forkeo is disposable. So no one has to do any dishes if that and a paper cup are used.

Of course disposable forks could be used, but they don’t look as cool. The cookie dunking aide appears to be compatible with Hydrox cookies, too. Interested backers might also like to check out Dunkin’ Buddy. This campaign seeks to raise $8,500 on Kickstarter. For $5, backers get a pack of 15 with an expected delivery of March 2015.


Sporklet makes mealtime less tedious for toddlers, parents alike

If it wasn’t for the fact that someone has to clean them up afterward, it might be amusing watching a toddler learn how to use a fork or spoon at mealtime. Chasing those peas around while trying to stab them with a fork, bite sized bits of carrots that miss the mouth on the first couple tries, and spaghetti is always a fun one. It’s enough to make one wonder if the fork or spoon winds up on the floor out of frustration or by accident.

Sporklet was designed with young ones and their developing motor skills in mind. The spoon-fork gadget also has a wrist attachment so that it can be loosely fastened to a child’s wrist and is less likely to wind up on the floor. Not entirely convinced it’s any better than any other toddler spoon or fork already out there, but it may be worth checking into further for the wrist attachment. This campaign seeks to raise $32,000. Early bird backers get one Sporklet for $16 with an expected delivery of July 2015.

Connected Objects Food and Beverage

SmartFork, SmartSpoon sense calories with every bite

The Premise. Part of what makes losing weight so difficult is that counting calories is an inexact science at best. Even with nutritional information, one has to monitor serving sizes and even cooking methods to know just how much calories are being consumed.

The Product. SmartFork and companion SmartSpoon want to do all the counting, and leave owners to simply do the eating. Pairing with an iPhone or Android via Bluetooth, the SmartFork takes into consideration the weight on the utensil and uses complex algorithms and sensors to determine the protein, fat, and carbohydrate content of the food and track caloric value. These utensils are save to eat with, easy to use and sync with weight loss websites, and are even dishwasher-safe.

The Pitch. Inventor Damir Wallener has been working on this concept for a while now, showing off multiple prototypes that started with more simple foods that only represented one of the three main detection groups (fat, protein, carbohydrates). The campaign video is short but sweet, explaining what the SmartFork or SmartSpoon can do, and why backers should donate. To put SmartForks to work making smart eating easier, $25,000 CAD is required to stabilize the manufacturing process of these smart yet simple tools.

The Perks. Bringing a SmartFork or SmartSpoon to the plate only takes a pledge of $99 CAD. Getting both takes $149 CAD, and at $199 CAD these utensils can be added to the prototype SmartBowl which works on similar principles. All products are expected to be delivered before the end of summer.

The Potential. SmartFork embraces some of the same concepts of the HAPIfork but actually determining the nutritional value of what it’s shoveling into your mouth is a tall order. It’s easy to be skeptical about how well these products work. If the tests show an orange slice, or a bit of chicken and calculate it, what about thick stews with lots of ingredients, or ice cream with toppings surrounded by the base flavor? Damir Wallener is confident in the impact of the SmartFork and SmartSpoon; ultimately, this kind of intelligence will be required to complement the wide range of exercise meters on the market.

Cooking Food and Beverage

Uten-sil raises silverware to a (slightly) higher level

Uten_sil 52a63e8206d9c92f76d6ef886259fe38_large[1]Why should smartphones have all the fun? The fork and knife finally have their own dock. For those who want someplace to lay their eating utensils during mealtime that doesn’t involve a napkin, the edge of their plate, or just on the table, Uten-sil Fork & Knife Rest might just make your day. The high-grade plastic and silicone wedge raises utensils slightly above the table’s surface so that there is less mess, potentially also keeping silverware free of tabletop germs. Prehaps the bigger benefit is keeping the tablecloth a little cleaner, assuming, o fcourse, that the utensils don’t get too covered in dropping substnaces such as sauces. For a pledge of at least $10, backers will get a two-pack of Uten-sil in their choice of black or white and an expected delivery of July 2014. Other colors and amounts are available for a higher donation, and it does appear to be a one-of-a-kind idea.