The future is now with the DRYODE™ Guardian Development Kit – With Dr. Moritz Thielen, CTO at IDUN Technologies

We launched our DRYODE™ Guardian Development Kit! Moritz Thielen, CTO at IDUN Technologies explains why this technology is different. IDUN Technology vision is to bring neurofeedback-enhanced user experiences and our dev kit is the solution to that. The biggest value of the DRYODE™ Guardian lies in the possibility to record high quality brain signals in a form factor that is unobtrusive and basically invisible.

Can you explain what is the DRYODE™ Guardian Development Kit? Is it the first product released by IDUN Technologies?

The DRYODE™ Guardian Development Kit is a development platform aimed to show the world all the amazing capabilities of neuro-enhanced product experiences. The kit contains two main components, a hardware component and access to our cloud platform. The hardware includes the wearable headset and electronics, whereas the cloud enables to visualize and download real-time data as well as providing classified output through an API. On top of that, we will offer research tools to build your own experiments.
IDUN vision is to bring customers neurofeedback-enhanced user experiences in an unobtrusive and intuitive way. We first built our expertise with soft, dry and reusable bioelectrodes mainly targeted at the research market. Those were really good components for existing brain computer interfaces that you wear on your head, but we realized that this form factor will never allow mass adoption of the technology. No one will want to run around with weird looking brain caps, the key to technology adoption is to create a product that is invisible to the outside and the user Measuring brain activity using in-ear headphones is our strategic goal to enhance existing products and services with brain sensing capabilities.

What is the technology behind this development kit?

Our technology is based on the DRYODE™ material, a soft and dry material formulation designed to extract the best quality bio-signals from the body, which means picking up electrical activity of the heart, of muscles and of the brain. We invested years of research first at ETH Zurich, and later within the company to get to an initial formula. Coming from research, the next tricky but crucial step was lab-to-scale, but we are now able to deposit the material using scalable industrial processes. Since the beginning of 2020, we shifted our strategic focus to brain signals, and in this process, transformed to a full stack company. This is heavily impacted our roadmap and hiring strategy. Today, we combine material know-how with electronics, data sciences, design, neuroscience and neuropsychology in a very capable team. This holistic approach allows us to optimize all components along the value chain, from the skin-interface, over raw data, to actionable insights based on our machine learning algorithms. We want to make neurofeedback easy and accessible for our B2B customers and for the end-users of the technology.

For which purpose could the kit be used?
To whom is it addressed?

We truly believe that our technology has the potential to make almost every product and service better for the customer. Neurofeedback enables a new user and patient experiences through personalization. We are developing three use cases as go-to-market strategy, that all fit under the umbrella of neuro-health. Those cases are sleep, mindfulness and hearing, each of them with the potential for medical and customer orientation. As an example, in sleep we are working on a medical use case targeted at detecting sleep onset during the day, in another case we try to classify drowsiness and attention levels for automotive applications.

The Guardian Development Kit is mainly aimed at electronic manufacturers, pharma companies, automotive or content providers that want to enhance their products or services with neurofeedback. Our goal is to partner with some of those big players to make our technology available to a mass market.

What is the value the DRYODE™ Guardian, what makes it different from what already exists on the market?

The biggest value of the DRYODE™ Guardian lies in the possibility to record high quality brain signals in a form factor that is unobtrusive and basically invisible. Existing solutions on the market are either uncomfortable and complex or they don’t provide good data quality. With the kit, we want to show an alternative, a solution that is intuitive and unobtrusive. The user should not feel any difference when using our device compared to any other pair of headphones. The only thing that should change is the user experience. We make it possible with empathic technology able to create a tailored environment based on emotional states.

What does it mean for IDUN Technologies to release the kit?

It means the world to us; product releases are always super exciting, as all the puzzle pieces come together and the sweat and tears finally pay off. This time is special because it’s our first full-stack product which implies an extreme complexity in order to cover all the elements with a rather small team. We’re really proud of what we achieved here, especially because we believe that the DRYODE™ Guardian best reflects the fundamental idea and the vision of IDUN. I’m extremely happy about the release and cannot wait to get customer feedback and hope they’ll like the development kit as much as we do. For us it’s the gateway to the Internet of Humans, the missing puzzle piece to link up our brain with internet and enable empathic technology. Many steps are still to be completed until mass adoption but with the DRYODE™ Guardian Development Kit we are one step closer to reaching our goal.

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