NOTE FROM DR. WAYNE BAKER—This week, we’re spanning generations and perspectives in welcoming guest writers Kathy Macdonald and Miles Grofsorean. In this five-part series, they are reporting on some very creative ideas from entrepreneurs. Here is their fourth column …
YOU can make a difference this week by telling the world what you think of our series of entrepreneurial ideas. So far, we’ve looked at Serviceable and Seductive ideas. Today, we’re reporting on some ideas in the Supportive sector—potentially helping us with a wide range of human needs.
ZAP! THE PAVLOK BAND?
Some of these ventures appear flashier than others. For instance, those of us in need of help breaking bad habits can invest in Pavlok. This shock bracelet can be programmed to monitor the wearer’s behavior and deliver an electric shock when his or her goals are not completed. It follows the principles of Pavlovian conditioning–the idea that a behavior can be eliminated by associating it with a positive or negative stimulus.
This idea is just the latest offering from a prolific Indian-American blogger and entrepreneur: Maneesh Sethi, best known for his Hack the System schemes to leap ahead in a tough economy. A couple of years ago, Sethi went viral with news that he had hired an aide to sit next to him while he worked—and slap him anytime he strayed from his work to check out social media. That slapping experiment led Sethi to develop this wrist band, which has even been mentioned by Jimmy Fallon. See the video clip below …
“Say, Hi!” Jibo the Family Robot?
There are other entrepreneurial ventures that provide all around assistance for your daily life. Jibo, a robot that resembles the Pixar lamp, is installed with two hi-res cameras, 360° microphones, a speaker, an on-board computer and WiFi and Bluetooth connectivity. Jibo recognizes it’s owners’ faces and voices, so that it knows who it’s speaking to in its Siri-like voice. Jibo can also be synced with other WiFi and Bluetooth capable devices so it can activate them depending on the owner’s habits. Jibo can, it seems, do anything from taking family photos to reading stories aloud to children. It’s hard to summarize the complete range of Jibo’s capabilities, but this informational video can:
MEOW! A KITTY BISTRO?
The products of the supportive sector are not limited to assisting humans. Bistro, a computerized cat feeder, uses facial recognition to monitor individual cats’ facial expressions to identify any potential health problems. It does this by comparing the images of a running compilation of images of the cat’s faces. It can even track multiple cats. And that’s not all! This device keeps track of food and water intake, and uses its onboard computer to send the data and images to your smartphone.
These supportive products offer more assistance than their serviceable and seductive counterparts. But will that make them more successful?
Do you think Pavlok is more for show or a functional product?
Would you want Jibo to be part of your family, or is having a highly intelligent computer so close to your family an intimidating prospect?
Is buying Bistro worth the money?
Like these ideas? Will they succeed? You could help to insure success simply by telling friends.
PLEASE, leave a comment below—and share this series with friends by clicking on the blue “f” Facebook icons or the small envelope shaped email icons.