Good morning, Pajiba, and happy Monday to you all! If you’re anything like me then you probably feel like something between this:
If you didn’t read Dustin’s excellent piece on sleep last week, you should.
Suffice it to say, sleep deprivation is a problem in the developed world, and technology has a big part to play in it. But, not content with being part of the problem, technology now wants to be part of the solution. Four young Londoners have created a watch-looking wristband called ‘Doppel’ that can apparently change your mood — or ‘tempo’ — at a moment’s notice; with one of the advertised potential uses being to chill you out at night before bedtime, as well as the ability to regulate your mood and focus levels throughout the day, which will apparently contribute to a better night’s sleep, because, as the creators say, ‘The best preparation for a good night’s sleep is having a calmer day.’ Team Turquoise (that’s their name) started a crowdfunding initiative for the product a few months ago, but now that that effort has been successful, their entry into the ‘empathic wearable technology’ market has become a reality. (If the phrase ‘empathic wearable technology’ doesn’t instinctively make you ragevomit at least a little bit, then congratulations, we’d probably never get on.)
The Magical Mystery Mood Watch (Team Turquoise, it’s not too late: if you aren’t set on the whole ‘Doppel’ thing just yet, feel free to use that) works by — essentially — injecting a beat into your pulse. It sits on your wrist, tapping out a beat, and apparently fooling your brain into thinking that the rhythm it’s hearing being tapped into you from the outside is actually your heart beat. Which, to me, sounds more like a poetic (and possibly drunk) description of the effects of music rather than the basis for heart-supplanting mood regulator technology, but the creators say their research and testing is solid, so who am I to argue — hungover and on my fourth cup of coffee of the morning as I am?
Either way, you strap the contraption on, and after some fiddling with a phone sync-up you program the watch to pulse at a set BPM thus, in theory, setting your mood and energy level, very much as if you were listening to music of different tempos. Just, you know, without the hassle and drag of actually listening to music. The phone sync-up, incidentally, is required to initially set your resting heart rate, but presumably also to allow you to instantly graph and Instagram your tempo preferences throughout the day so that your followers can send you suggestions, drop you some tempo likes, and maybe feel some affinity with you if they happen to also love the 3-4pm 50BPM chill-zone.
Sorry, Tires, your outdated, analogue methods now belong in the Stone Age.
The easy insult to throw at the thing, as it sits there on your wrist, face facing inward, would be that it’s ‘just another hipster accessory’. This would be unfair, seeing as in actual fact it seems to be the ultimate hipster accessory! The ability to tune your brain into different beats without anyone else knowing about it? It’s your very own private silent rave! On your wrist! Hell, make it a social thing; get together, sync up BPMs.
Event: The Great Magical Mystery Silent Mood Watch Rave!
Venue? Wherever I go, bro!
Time? I dunno, bro, it’s not actually an actual watch!
OK, I’m probably being mean, biased, and judgmental. It didn’t help that when I pictured the first likely customer, all I could see was:
And directly in line behind him?
So, yeah, I’ll probably be getting one within the year.
Oh, and in other, totally unrelated news, Australia and New Zealand have denied Chris Brown a visa on ‘questionable character’ grounds. I’m not gonna pass comment, but I will finish my sentence before it runs on into this gif that was already here before I showed up today: