MIAMI (CBSMiami) – There’s a new device which claims to show people how they think—a window to the brain.
The wearable technology tracks the steps the wearer takes, the food consumed, even how the wearer sleeps.
Spencer Roth says all the technology in today’s world distracts him while he’s working.
“You have your phone next to you, you have the computer, you have chat windows,” said Roth.
Roth tried special glasses that are supposed to help improve focus.
“It’s helping me train my brain so focusing becomes more natural and more of an instinct rather than something I have to force myself to do,” Roth said.
The brain training device is called Narbis. Lindsay and Devon Greco are the mother and son developers.
“We wanted technology that fit into people’s lives and that they use while doing their everyday activities,” said Devon Greco.
The glasses have sensors the Grecos claim read brain activity so when you are fully concentrating, the lenses become lighter. The goal is to learn to stay focused.
“You are getting constant feedback on what your brain is doing and very gently it’s subtly changing the intensity of what you see,” said Devon Greco.
Roth finds the glasses “reassuring.”
“I’ll be working on something, I’ll notice that the glasses have been clear for a really long period of time,” Roth said. “It’s really reassuring.”
There are other devices that also offer brain monitoring to help with stress and focus and the brain game exercises and video training programs have been the standard to help improve concentration. The glasses are the first to use any activity as an opportunity for immediate feedback.
“You can play a video game, you can watch the television, you can do work, whatever that is so it can be used to improve your engagement in a particular task,” said Devon Greco.
Assistant Professor of Psychiatry and Neuroscience Heather Berlin with the Ichan School of Medicine, Mt. Sinai, questions the effectiveness of these devices, saying sometimes just a simple change in routine, or even physical exercise can bring back focus and help brain function.
“The question is what are we really measuring with these sensors and how informative is that information,” Berlin said. “Changing your environment or learning something new can lead to neuroplasticity, forming new connections and that’s very healthy for the brain.”
Narbis is in development right now. They’ve started a Kickstarter campaign to fund the production of their device.
Early backers will be able to get Narbis for around $300.