It has been 6 intensive and busy months at Mindprober! In what regards to hardware, we have been developing James One, the slickest biometric sensor on the market! James One feeds our media testing platform with medical grade physiological signals to let you know the emotional impact of your content. Let’s look at it in more detail.
We have already disclosed it, but let me start by reminding you why “James One”? Our device was named after William James, the father of modern psychology and author of “What is an Emotion”. He famously explained his theory about how emotions are felt and how emotions depend on bodily responses, such as racing heart and sweaty palms. In short, William James paved the way for modern research in emotions.
James One is, in fact, a pair of sensors, each measuring a specific physiological signal. The galvanic skin response (GSR) sensor that is sensitive to hand palm perspiration and measures responses of the autonomic nervous system to timely stimuli in the content – the larger emotional load of the content the higher perspiration activity. The heart rate (HR) sensor, you know, it measures the number of times your heart beats per minute (normally between 60-100 bpm on adults), generally known as pulse, which depends on a range of body internal and external factors and can be significantly altered by emotionally salient events – I can tell you, my joy of announcing James One has been speeding up my heart a lot!
We wanted James One to have 2 sensors featuring high-quality data, slick and small design and comfortable for studies longer than 60 minutes. The GSR part is applied on the palm of the hand and the HR part is preferably applied on a fingertip.
The mobile app Mindprober (to be released soon on Google Play and App Store) has been developed in parallel with James One. The app enables panel members to participate in a media testing study after accepting an invitation. Once the study starts, each sensor gets independently paired with the mobile app, which collects declarative data, merges them with biometrics and sends everything to our data backend on a second basis. In the backend, the data received from all apps being used in a consumer panel is then automatically analyzed through state-of-the-art algorithms and the emotional impact reports are automatically generated for the tested content.
Finally, a question that we get many times: does the market really need another pair of sensors to collect mainstream biometrics such as GSR and HR? Yes, it does, especially in market research! First, we could produce James One really cheaper than any other comparable device in the market. It works really well and the data collected are as good as any medical system out there. We will show you this data sometime later! Besides, to the best of our knowledge, James One is a unique device that collects GSR signals from the hand palm which happens to be one of the best human body regions to collect GSR responses to “external” stimuli. The wrist is not one of them! James One also collects HR through a sensor that uses 3 LEDs with different wavelengths for robustness against signal variations for different skin types. It can measure the pulse efficiently at the fingertip or at the earlobe. Right! It seems an awkward location for a pulse sensor but it works incredibly well and it is comfortable too.
In summary, we are very happy with what we could accomplish with James One and we are sure that it can get the data that our clients need with the comfort that our panel members deserve. There is always room for improvements and we keep an eye on it!