“Mind over matter” is one of the most common phrases used to identify a problem and try to overcome it.
But how often do you think, that’s easier said than done?
In this week’s “Technically Speaking” report, Local 10′s Gio Insignares shows us how the answer to that question might now be easier to find.
When it comes to the mind, an EEG, or electroencephalogram, is a test that measures the electrical impulses of your brain.
Analyzing that data afterward can open up a world of information and one South Florida-based company is promising to help capitalize on that opportunity.
It’s an opportunity to learn more about your brain, and in turn, about yourself.
Traditionally, if you wanted to study the results of an EEG, you would have to get a cap that plugs into a computer. You would put it over your head and have to study brain waves all through complicated wires.
But with Enchanted Wave, it’s as simple as putting a strap around your head.
Jaime Tartar, a professor of neuroscience at Nova Southeastern University and the scientific director of Enchanted Wave, explains how the complexities inside our heads are being highlighted by this one device.
“Most people don’t understand what’s happening in the brain at any given moment in time,” Tartar said. “We know what our heart rate variability is, we know what our heart rate is, and we know all kinds of things about ourselves. But we don’t understand our own brain states, and this will allow people to sort of understand their neural activity under different conditions.”
She believes the headband can change our own perception of what’s possible with our bodies, all through access to data that wasn’t easily accessible before.
“I think we understood, oh wait, this technology is useful for not only researchers -- it’s useful for the everyday person,” Tartar said.
Partnering alongside CEO and founder Cheng Qian, Enchanted Wave hopes to take what can normally be a long and complicated procedure and make it much more flexible and applicable.
The idea is anyone can figure it out and use it right away.
With the free range of motion and easier use, in ideal, everyday conditions, the promise is that the data gathered from the headband is more accurate and reflective of the true environment you’re in.
Whether you’re having a conversation, taking a walk or even sitting at your desk, you can look at all the data in real time.
All of it is recorded in the company’s companion app, down to the millisecond.
Qian walked us through the real-time data as we were talking, explaining that each bar has a different meaning – delta, theta, alpha, sigma, and high beta. Each of those indicate a different status.
At one point, the red bar – high beta – spiked, leading to laughter among all of us.
High beta monitors the level of excitement or nervousness.
“They have different meanings – there’s delta, theta, alpha, sigma, and high beta – they indicate different brain statuses,” Qian explained. “For example, if we look at the red bar – the high beta – if it’s high, that means you’re excited or you’re nervous.”
The company’s goal is to use this across a handful of applications, like sleep dynamics, sports and performance, lucid dreaming and meditation.
It informs users in a unique way, the team says, because it’s the only device that can read brain waves with 100-percent accuracy, and that will lead to researchers and the everyday person to gain insight never available before.
“It’s an organ that we haven’t been able to understand for a long time, mostly because we just never had the ability to get in there and record with ease,” Tartar said.
Right now, the headband is listed on their website for $249. The app is free.
In the short term, the company wants to get the word out to researchers that this device is available to change how their work is seen and used.
And as they move forward, they also hope to get involved in the performance market, helping people, like athletes and others, understand how analyzing brainwaves can lead to better results.