By Christina Janansky
Before we all had iPods and iPhones, we had MP3 players, Walkmans and CD players.
Music has definitely become an integral part to everyone’s everyday life and we often use it to convey our emotions and life events.
We use songs, artists and playlists to, more or less, create the “soundtracks of our lives.”
And now, thanks to Tokyo based company Neurowear, we can access these “soundtracks” just by feeling a certain emotion or thinking a particular thought, according to a recent Discovery News article.
The company’s newest invention—a pair of headphones more fondly known as “Mico”—cues feelings from your subconscious and appropriately matches songs to them.
The bulky white prototype had its world premier at this year’s SXSW—a conference that converges original music, independent films and emerging technology—in Austin, Texas between March 8 and 13. And, while the headphones are still in the prototype phase, Neurowear told Discovery that they plan to put pairs on the market sometime in the near future.
The current model looks like a normal pair of headphones—except for the awkward electroencephalograph (EEG) sensor that comes out and around the wearer’s forehead. This sensor is used to scan the wearer’s brain patterns.
Once the headphones—which are plugged into a smart device with an accompanying app—detect the wearer’s emotions, the software selects an appropriate “neuro-tagged” song from a large Neurowear database.
After the app has detected the mood and signaled a corresponding song, its earpieces light up during song play and even illuminate certain images. According to the Discovery New report, they might even light up with “ZZZ” when the wearer is fatigued. The new invention is definitely strange (though totally cool), but Neurowear is notorious for such unusual products. A couple years ago, the project team created Necomimi a brain-scanning headband that uses moving motorized cat-shaped ears to reflect the wearer’s emotions.
And if the motorized cat ears can become a successful product, I’m sure we’ll be seeing the Mico on the market sometime soon.