EMOTAI is using biofeedback to improve competitive videogaming



EMOTAI Gaming Performance EnhancementOver the past few years, the technology behind brain tracking has gotten better. As the tech has improved, the usage has gone from toys and gimmicks to real-world problem-solving. We have seen drones controlled by thoughts and we’ve seen dream and mood analysis technology come to market. Now, the technology is being applied to videogame performance by tracking response during gameplay, thanks to EMOTAI.

This team of biomedical engineers came together to use biofeedback to analyze and improve performance for professional and semi-pro competitive gamers. Using a headband with 5 sensors and screen scraping on the videogame, the company can determine the gamer’s mental state during each phase of gameplay. By combining this data with artificial intelligence, the system is also able to make determinations to help improve your state during those situations.

The prototype that Carolina Amorim, the CEO of EMOTAI, brought with her is similar to the hardware that will come to market next year, with one major difference. Heart rate is being moved from an ear clip to the forehead so that the device does not add any additional issues to your gameplay. With an ear clip, it could get in the way of headphones, which are essential to competitive gameplay.

While the technology is currently being applied to videogames, the company is aware that it could be adapted to other areas as well. Some of the industries that have been interested in their technology have been professional sports and racing. Bringing the tech to new industries would require a new set of AI training, but it is on the roadmap for the future.

If you are interested in getting your hands on the EMOTAI headband, they will be offering a preorder opportunity with hardware set to launch in 2020. To get more information or to sign up for notifications about the preorder process, head over to their website.

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Take the headache out of getting a babysitter with lliTTLE bUNNY



Little Bunny Babysitter FinderOf all of the services that we hire out in our lives, there is none more important than childcare. After all, there is nothing more important than the safety and wellbeing of our children. That being said, it can also be a huge hassle to find good babysitting services, especially for those last-minute needs. Jean Baptiste Mbaya, founder of Millennial R&D which developed liTTLE bUNNY, made some time to come speak with us at Collision Conference 2019.

liTTLE bUNNY is an on-demand babysitting app that is powered by AI to make childcare very affordable, easy and reliable. They take away the hassle of trying to find a good childcare provider. We’ve probably all been in a situation where last-minute plans come up, or maybe the babysitter that you have had scheduled for weeks calls and cancels. Trying to call somebody up to fill in for the evening can be frustrating and can also get quite expensive if you can even get somebody on shift notice.

The sitters are thoroughly vetted in advance and also come from your same community. So it’s not meant for somebody who lives far away to come into your neighborhood, as with rideshare, grocery and food delivery services. They are people nearby that you may already know either directly or indirectly. And allowing the ability to read ratings and testimonials from other parents provides an added layer that provides more peace of mind. Parents will also get to choose whether the babysitter comes to their house, or they take the kids to the sitter’s home. Getting onto the platform is easy and there are no signup fees for either the parents or the babysitters. It’s also affordable because on average, their prices are lower than traditional childcare costs. Prices are set automatically based upon specific economic factors in each geographic area. And hourly rates get even lower when the parent is requesting service for more than 1 child.

So many areas of our lives are now made easier with the help of mobile apps and community sharing services. It only makes sense that this technology is now being applied to more things, like babysitting. After you watch Jean’s full interview, make sure to also check out their website.

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BagsAway makes travel easier by providing a place to store your bags



BagsAway Luggage StorageFor many of us, when we travel there is one common problem that pops up: what do we do with our luggage on the first and last day? Before you can check in to your hotel when you arrive or after you check out before you leave, you are stuck either sitting somewhere with your bags or dragging them along with you wherever you go. There has got to be a better way, and that way has finally arrived in BagsAway.

This new platform allows travelers to find locations with a little extra space that are willing to store their stuff while they continue to experience their trip. The benefit for the people offering up space, in addition to a little revenue, is exposing new people to their place, whether it be a restaurant, cafe, store, etc. By working with BagsAway, however, they get something just as important: protection. The company provides the hosts with special locks to protect the bags, as well as protecting the hosts. This creates a level of trust between the two parties because there is a central protector. If something does go wrong, BagsAway also has insurance coverage for their hosts, covering $1200 per bag stored.

While many startups launch in a small area, BagsAway recognizes that travel happens worldwide, and the need goes with travels. Because of this, they have worked to secure locations in many of the top tourist locations, including Montreal, New York City, Tel Aviv, and more. This means that wherever you are traveling, you should check and see if there is a BagsAway host in your destination city.

The platform is live now and looking for both hosts and travelers to give it a try. To find out the cities where it is currently in action or to book storage, head over to their website.

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GOAT is helping to reduce food waste by offering it to others



GOAT Generation Food Waste RecoveryIt is amazing how much food waste happens in the modern world. We are all guilty of it, from our homes or business. Even bigger is restaurants and caterers, who oftentimes end up with meals that they cannot sell at the end of the day. Making it worse, many places make it illegal for these businesses to donate their leftover food to homeless shelters and other non-profit organizations. But, how can they responsibly get rid of the food without throwing it into a landfill? Through a new system called GOAT Generation.

Through GOAT, individuals and businesses can sell or donate their unused food and meals. This creates a unique way for unwanted food to find a new home that can help someone else out. Our own team is a great example of who this product is designed for. When we travel for an event like Collision, we have taken to staying in a house or condo. We do this because it allows us to buy groceries and save a ton of money. However, we always end up with extra supplies – sandwich meats, cheese, bread, and sometimes things like chicken. We hate to allow it to go bad or throw it out. We have looked for people in the area, including the owner of the house we stayed in, to make sure it gets used. However, an app like GOAT would allow us to not only ensure the food isn’t wasted but also make back a little of the money we spent on it.

GOAT is just getting started, with a small area of implementation. The company is working to expand that coverage to more areas. To find out where the platform currently works or to download the app on iOS or Android, head over to the company’s website.

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Crowdmark removes the frustration from the grading process in school



Crowdmark Grading PlatformThe grading process for teachers, teachers assistants, and professors can be a big challenge, especially as the student count per educator increases. For the students, receiving those grades is also a challenge, between having to get assignments to the teacher in time, then waiting an unknown amount of time to get back the score can be emotional. Some technologies have come around to try and enhance that experience, but as our host Daniele can attest, those technologies tend to come with a caveat: a lack of feedback. A new platform, Crowdmark, recognized all of these issues and set out to address them.

One of the big focuses of the platform is providing meaningful feedback to the students. This can be done in a couple of different ways. First, the teacher can create a collection of pre-defined comments, each with an assigned score. The teacher and their assistants can then use that as a rubric to score assignments easily and uniformly. However, sometimes something happens that just doesn’t fit into the pre-defined. Then, the grader can enter a custom comment and score it as needed. This makes the process more fair for students that are in a large group, including those submitting papers for competitions and contests.

For students, the benefit of feedback is obvious. If you get useful information about what you did right and what you did wrong, you can try to get better at that particular topic. The feedback received from instructors through Caremark has become so important to students that one of the schools using the platform has a dedicated channel on Reddit called “Caremark Flex” in which students share their biggest, most impressive feedback.

Caremark is looking to expand its reach to new colleges and universities. For more information about the platform and to contact the company about bringing it into your school, check out their website.

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Event Realms is bringing new technology to the event experience



Event Realms Event TechnologyIf you have attended a big event in the past few years, you know that the level of technology in use has increased dramatically, but the types of technology haven’t changed much. For example, stages no longer have printed backdrops, having been replaced by large LED walls or projection screens. However, it’s still mostly audio and video support, screens, and internet that dominate the event supply catalog, even though there are many new and emerging technologies for events. That is exactly the problem that Event Realms is hoping to solve.

When looking around the Collision Conference itself, Kevin Halfpenny, CEO of the company, has some small but impactful upgrades that he would recommend. While the event’s app is spectacular, getting basic information while on the show floor can be a challenge. Where on the show floor is a particular company? What day are they exhibiting? Where’s the closest bathroom? These questions seem trivial, but they are asked hundreds of times per day, oftentimes to people without the answer, like security. A few interactive informational kiosks, spread throughout the floor, could make the problem a thing of the past.

That is what Event Realms brings to its clients. They know the industry and they know the new technology, and they bring those two aspects together to enhance events for those in attendance and those who are remote. One of the technology categories that he sees as a huge opportunity for events is for making remote attendees feel as close to being there as possible. At a recent conference, he saw a remote presence experience in action that he claims was almost as good as being there.

If you are involved in an event and want to make the experience better for everyone involved, you can reach out to Event Realms on their website.

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Calm Radio can fit into your busy lifestyle and create your calm



Calm RadioThere is a phrase that goes “Music has charms to soothe a savage beast”. There is a lot to be said for those words. Eric Harry, the founder of Calm Radio, knows all too well how tue that phrase is. He is in the business of streaming music. The company was second behind Pandora before all the others came in. They specialize in relaxation music and have the world’s largest classical channel collection. They do also offer sleep and meditation music, which is a very popular genre now.

There is competition today in the listening space, such as Spotify, Apple Music, and YouTube Music. However, Calm Radio is a family-run business that, in the last two years, has done a deep dive in the market study to analyze their mobile and marketing space to see where they stand. They then made a lot of changes and found out that they have grown about 50% year after year though they had not started marketing until last October.

In addition to providing music for relaxation and sleep, the aspect of health and wellness is becoming popular. There are a lot of channels with a variety of unique artists. They offer those with long formats for helping with sleep and meditation or even for students who are studying. The availability is world-wide and there are 20 platforms such as Roku, Alexa, Apple TV, IOS and Android. The music is very high-end and has a great graphic interface. The cost is $10 per month, $99 per year or $160 for two years. The selection of music is varied and you can select from several genres for own listening pleasure. He is realizing that recently, that this is great for the wellness and health practitioners. In a focused study, they found out that there was a large percentage of men who chose this. Employers are encouraged to offer this to their employees to create a more peaceful working environment and thus be more productive For more information, go to the website.

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Assister is making software assistants easier and safer for all



Assister AI Digital AssistantsFor software developers today, if they want to integrate an assistant into their products, they either have to rely on a third-party service, integrate with a general-purpose solution like Siri or Cortana, or limit themselves to the low value add features like FAQs and basic questions. But most developers want more capability – they want the strength of a full-featured system, with the nuance of their software. That is where Assister comes into play.

This system is designed to help software developers implement a natural language assistant into their products without having to spend the incredible amount of time and resources to build the technology themselves. What that means is that they can allow their users to ask questions or, more interestingly, pose complex challenges, in the same way they would ask another person. Imagine if your bank allowed you to ask the app, “How much money have I spent on tacos this month?” instead of looking at a list and filtering by transaction type. Or how about being able to ask Facebook messenger, “When was the last time I talked with Michele?” rather than trying to find her on your conversation list. All of this and more is possible through Assister.

Most importantly, this technology can live within the company’s platform. This means that there is no need to transfer data between systems. If the bank were to integrate that question into Siri, it would require them to give Apple the answer to the question to display on your screen. By keeping everything housed within the platform, developers no longer have to share critical information with third parties, protecting your privacy and theirs.

For more information about Assister, or to get a demo of the platform, check out the company’s website.

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HealthCasa will bring the doctor to you when and where you need them



HealthCasa Podiatry ServicesNot everyone realizes that 25% of the bones in their bodies are found in the feet. Foot care is so incredibly important to your overall health. They carry you for your entire life. That is the reason you need to have regular care for them. However, scheduling and keeping appointments can be hard because of work commitments or just a busy lifestyle in general. That’s where Mike Gasper has a great idea for helping you keep up with your optimum foot health regime. He is the founder and COO of HealthCasa, a tech-enabled platform that can deliver podiatric services and/or orthopedic appointments at the patient’s home or office.

The first thing that has to happen is for the person to realize and accept that there is indeed a problem. You sign up for the address of the location of the patient. You then decide on the time of the appointment depending on your availability. You then find the doctor that is available for you, according to who is participating. With this system, it allows the doctors to focus on being doctors and not on the business aspect of running an office.

Some people are very anxious about seeing a doctor, especially for the first time. HealthCasa wants to relieve that from the picture. Communication is the key to putting people at ease and talking to them will help with that. HealthCasa feels that they are a family helping others and that feeling can and does extend to the patients.

Mike’s goal is currently to stay in the podiatric field and to grow and develop. Down the road, he hopes to bring other fields onboard. He currently is in the Toronto area but hopes to branch out into the greater Ontario area. To find a doctor and book an appointment, go to the website.

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Alavida Health can return control of your life from alcohol dependence



Alavida Alcohol RecoveryAlcohol is one of the first things that every culture creates, and yet it is one of the biggest health and social issues for people around the world. There have always been programs to help people deal with the issue, but it tends to be a one size fits all kind of solution, and involves abandoning drinking altogether. But that is not the solution for everyone – many people just need some help to taper down their drinking habits. That’s where Alavida Health comes in, with a service to help people lower their alcohol intake gradually.

Rather than going cold turkey from heavy drinking to no drinking, this course helps a person to get their behaviors under control. This is done with a series of evidence-based processes and treatments that are guided by a wide knowledge base and at the hand of doctors and therapists, with special training in alcohol addiction. These medical professionals are available to help you through the process, either through in-person visits, phone calls, or using secure video conferencing. This team is there to help you when you need it so that you can be proud of your results in under 6 months.

Within the system, you can also track your daily activities, and log what your connected behaviors were. This gives you and your care team the ability to identify what your triggers are to help you address them. If you can identify what drives you to drink, it is far easier to address those triggers head-on. There are also tools for your loved ones and support network to receive assistance and to help give it to you.

Alavida’s outpatient program is available now. For more information on how it works, to take the assessment, or to get in touch with the company, check out their website.

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