Offline Memory Aids?

Game developer Martin Kenwright, who sold his company Evolution Studios to Sony in 2007, is doing what serial entrepreneurs do: starting a new company. Called Starship Group, he says it will focus on e-health, children’s gaming, and lifestyle products, according to an interview Kenwright gave to the Liverpool Echo.

We’re interested in what he calls, “Forget-Me-Not,” and describes as a “wearable second brain” that will assist people with dementia and other memory problems. He gives no other details, except to claim, “We need the use of low-energy chipsets in the wearables sector to increase massively before the true power of Forget-Me-Not can be fully realised.”

Our colleague Alfred Poor has commented on the chips. What little else we can glean comes from this quote: “In five years, I fully expect memory aids to be as ubiquitous as hearing aids,” said Mr Kenwright.

So will the form factor be something on the order of a Bluetooth headset? Perhaps like a political staffer, it will prompt you with the name of the person whose hand you’re shaking. We wonder as we often do, to what extent such dedicated hardware is going to be outmoded by apps for cell phones, which are already evolving into wearable devices.

For example, IPhone users can download Cue You, which its 62-year-old co-creator Jane Birdwell describes as, “a powerful communication and monitoring tool that helps to support the independence of individuals with memory loss, developmental disabilities and traumatic brain injury.” By the time Forget-Me-Not comes to market, could it already be outmoded by something like Cue You on an iWatch, in the same way that eReaders may be replaced by apps on cell phones?

But then, maybe our cynicism about dedicated devices goes back to the CueCat. Now there’s a memory challenge, kids.

worstinventions_cuecat

Yes, this was a breakthrough technology.