Sleep Sensei lulls you to sleep with fun lights, calm breathing patterns

Many people have trouble sleeping. There are few natural options out there that can help. Lack of sleep can disrupt daytime life immensely and is extremely unhealthy.

Using lights, Sleep Sensei can help restless people fall asleep. This small device about the size of two alarm clocks sits on the bedside table. It uses soft, red lights to mimic breathing patterns. When you first crawl into bed, the lights are fast, getting brighter when you inhale and dimmer when you exhale. As you doze off, the lights become slower to slow down breath, which is what causes sleep to happen. The device pivots to different angles and features a knob that lets the user adjust brightness and speed of the lights.

While this product has a sensible purpose behind it, it seems like a lot of clutter compared to taking a couple of Unisom tablets. And the design leaves some room for improvement, slightly resembling some kind of mini Medieval catapult. Backers will need to donate $40 for an assembled Sleep Sensei with estimated delivery in September 2015. This product is hoping to raise $2,500 with the help of Kickstarter.

Sensors/IoT Sleep

Smartphone-adjustable ThinkPillow measures sleep, wakes you up

Sleep is one of the most important ways to stay healthy. Sleeping resets mind, body, and soul, giving the chance for healing. However, most have trouble with their sleep patterns, either waking up in the middle of a REM cycle or sleeping for too short of a time.

ThinkPillow is a smart pillow that is fully adjustable in height and firmness. It is designed with special technology aimed at fixing any kind of spinal pain. Not only does it come with comfort, however, but it also tracks your sleep patterns. With this data, the accompanying smartphone app can choose when to wake you so that you’ll feel alert and refreshed instead of bedraggled and exhausted.

ThinkPillow’s smartphone app charts sleep patterns over time and, as such, can be useful to physicians if something goes wrong. In addition, it lets the user track what they’re doing three hours before bedtime and can make suggestions based on those habits. For instance, if the user isn’t getting enough sleep, but drinks coffee every night, the app will tell them to cut it out. ThinkPillow also spies on family members and lets users see the sleep patterns of mom, grandma, dad or whoever else uses the device.

Getting the right amount of sleep can be truly difficult. They say you should get out of bed when you initially wake up in the morning, but if that’s too early for some, they’d rather get another half an hour of sleep. It’s great that ThinkPillow can tell when the person is actually asleep, not just when they intend to be asleep, and uses that to wake them up in the morning. While well-intentioned, the family sharing feature may get a little annoying to some. Though it is good for elderly family members who are too far away to check up on. One ThinkPillow can be had for $102 NZD (~$79 USD) for estimated delivery in April 2015. This product hopes to raise $50,000 NZD (~$38,800 USD) on Kickstarter.


Mutation spherical board game invites you to have a ball

The Premise. The classic board games we’ve all been playing for years can make us feel, well, bored. With little interaction, complicated rules and limited possibilities, popular board games sometimes leave us wanting more.

The Product. Mutation is a 3-D spherical game that can be played with two, three, or four players. It’s multi-colored and has round pegs that can be moved around on it. Mutation comes with several variations on how it can be played with possibilities for more games born from the players’ imaginations. Most games focus on the goal of getting the pegs arranged in certain shapes or patterns. Mutation is plastic and the pegs come in two colors, black and white to differentiate the teams.

The Pitch. Mutation’s funny campaign video shows two drones playing Checkers and a third Mutation advocate saying, “King me? Really?” It goes with the typical trope of the two boring guys coming alive as soon as they’re handed Mutation. The rest of the campaign discusses how the actual product will be a more updated version of the one seen in the video. It also goes into detail about how Mutation is actually quite difficult to manufacture. This interactive game hopes to raise $5,000 with the help of Kickstarter.

The Perks. For $20, early birds will receive Mutation from the second production batch. At a regular price, the second production batch Mutation goes for $25. Reward tiers climb up to $10,000 with estimated delivery set for January 2015.

The Potential. The idea of a 3-D multi-player game isn’t anything new. Mutation’s claim to fame is that, along with the various games it already provides, you can make up your own games using this product. The campaign is unclear how this is possible and, really, any game comes with this possibility. Since each set game the product provides centers just on shapes, it’s difficult to think that Mutation will really be a heap of fun. It’s hard to predict without actually playing it, but one seeking fun might instead opt for a Bop It. If marketed to a younger crowd, however, Mutation may have success if sold as a shape-learning tool for small children.