Look Ma! I’m a Cyborg

Rani Molla at GigaOm has written a great blog post about the Wearable Man, focusing on everything from Google Glass — that allow you to do anything you normally would with your phone or laptop without using your hands — to fitbit and other health-related devices.

It’s becoming more true every day: computers aren’t things in a room that you visit (or are trapped in); they’re tools you can adapt and use in order to create your best self.

And where does the HAPIfork belong in this new ecosystem of personal tools? While we don’t wear our fork (!) if we have just the one special fork, we are going to want it with us at all times, ready to go… right?

Good news: the HAPIfork will come with its own compact case. And, in those situations where you eat but don’t have ready access to a way to clean off your fork before you return it to your case — remember, HAPIfork can go into the dishwasher — you can bring hand wipes, including these iHerb wipes that are designed for edible food. 

The HAPIfork is not only a tool that can train you to change your behavior without you really needing to focus on anything in particular, it’s also something that can help you if you DO want to focus on something in particular! The HAPIfork collects information about how fast you’re eating, and how much you’re eating. You can watch over time as you adapt to the tool, and even slow down further than HAPIfork wants you to. You can compare that with how and when you exercise, and how much you sleep. You can learn when you have your own particular challenges, and develop specific strategies to affect them.

We’ll be providing more detail on how to use the technology to meet specific goals in future posts! At HAPILABS, we are dedicated to helping you get wherever you want to go.

Remembering What Really Matters During a Kickstarter Campaign

by Renee Blodgett

I remember being in the offices of a renowned mobile and software company ten or so years ago after having lunch with the CEO. They had just completed an IPO and as we walked into the main office space, increasingly becoming overcrowded with cubicles, he noticed how many employees were watching the stock price on their screens.

With me trailing behind him, he abruptly stopped and addressed his teams with a sense of urgency that surprised me. He said in a bold voice: “I don’t want to see you starring at numbers on your screen all day – spend your time doing whatever you can to make our existing customers happy.”

Hear hear. At the start of the HAPIfork Kickstarter campaign two days ago, I found myself obsessed with checking the screen constantly, even during meetings. The addictive nature of a campaign that has $$’s attached to it is impossible to ignore. After day two, I stopped and returned to a quick check every other hour, as a way to quickly check the progress but not be consumed by it.

That said, a campaign of this nature takes on a life of its own. After four hours, the Kickstarter HAPIfork campaign was 10% towards reaching its $100K goal and on day three, we are at 42,544 at the time of writing this blog post.

Here’s a glimpse of my addictive screen grabs on Wednesday and Thursday.

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Screen Shot 2013-04-17 at 7.00.00 PM

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We’re off to a great start and kudos to the HAPILABS team, which is operating across five time zones. Please support us on the Kickstarter HAPILABS page so we can make inventor Jacques Lepine’s dream come true.

Here’s a sample of the fabulous media coverage since our campaign hit two days ago…..

  • CNET – Donna Tam |
    4/17 | HapiFork: Vibrating novelty or health revolution?
  • Cult of Android – Eli Milchman |
    4/17 | Hapifork Tattles To Your Phone About How Much You’re Eating [Kickstarter]
  • Engadget – Christopher
    Trout | 4/17 | HAPILABS launches HAPIfork Kickstarter campaign, we go hands-on and
  • Fodors: http://www.fodors.com/news/best-new-travel-tech-for-2013-6387.html
  • Forbes – Larry Magid |
    4/17 | A HAPI Meal That You Eat Slowly
  • Fox – New York – Luke Funk | 4/17 | Fork vibrates when you eat too quickly
  • Fox 10 TV – Alabama – Lenise Ligon | 4/17 | HAPIfork; Bluetooth enabled fork
  • Health 2.0 News – Laura Montini | 4/17 | An Afternoon with the HAPIfork
  • International Business Times – Esther Tanguintic-Misa | 4/17 | Problem Controlling Weight Gain? Curb It With Hapifork…
  • Mashable
    Chris Taylor | 4/17 | Hands On With the Fork That Tells You to Eat Slower
  • Medical Daily – Susan Scutti | 4/17 | Vibrating Forks to Help You Lose Weight? The Unusual Intersection of SmartProducts and Crowdsourcing
  • Nature World News – Tamarra Kemsley | 4/17 | ‘Smart’ Fork Vibrates When You Eat Too Quickly
  • Science World Report – Kathleen Lee | 4/17 | Don’t Put Your Fork Down, HAPIfork Vibrates if You Eat Too Quickly
  • Slash Gear – Craig Lloyd | 4/17 | HAPIfork
    Kickstarter campaign officially launches
  • TechCrunch – Gregory Ferenstein | 4/17 | Eating Fast Is Destroying Your Body. The HAPIfork’s Buzz Can Help
  • The New Zealand Herald – AFP | 4/17 | Would you buy a vibrating fork to stop you getting fat? 
  • The Washington Times – Jessica Chasmar | 4/17 | Obesity battle gets French weapon: Forks that vibrate on quick eaters
  • TUAW
    Mike Schramm | 4/17 | HAPIfork Kickstarter campaign goes live
  • Ubergizmo – Hubert Nguyen | 4/17 | HAPIfork Starts Crowdfunding on Kickstarter
  • Venture Beat – Rebecca Grant | 4/17 | World’s first connected fork could help you eat healthier, slower, and less
  • Wall Street Journal – N/A | 4/17 | HAPIfork Now Available for Pre-Order on Kickstarter
  • Xconomy
    Wade Roush | 4/17 | Testing Kickstarter’s Appetite for a Digital Fork and ‘Positive Punishment’ 
  • Boot Camp – Fred Fishkin |
    4/18 | HapiLabs opens Kickstarter campaign for the HapiFork
  • Financial Everyday   –
    N/A |
    4/18 | HAPIfork Now Available for PreOrder on Kickstarter
  • Gearburn – Bianca Budricks |
    4/18 | Is HAPIFork a dumb fad or smart new eating tool?
  • Gizmag – Dave Parrack |
    4/18 | HAPIfork smart fork hits Kickstarter
  • Health Care Asia – AFP | 4/18 | Vibrating Fork Helps Combat Obesity
  • CBS Radio & Larrys World
    Larry Magid | 4/18 | HAPIFork Helps You Eat More Slowly
  • NBC – Bay Area – Scott Budman |
    4/18 | ‘HAPIfork’ a New Tech Diet Tool
  • NBC News – N/A | 4/18 | HAPIfork Now Available for PreOrder on Kickstarter

40% of Kickstarter Goal in Two Days!

Amazing! Thank you so much for all you’re support!

We’re over 40% of the way to our goal in only two days!

In fact, many people have asked us how they are supposed to order multiple forks. So we went ahead and added three more Pledge Levels:

  • HAPI Couples – 2 forks for $175 ($87.50 per fork)
  • HAPI Family – 4 forks for $350 ($87.50 per fork)
  • HAPI Team – 10 forks for $850 ($85 per fork)

If you have already ordered a HAPIfork and want to change and order more, you can press the blue button on the top right “Manage Your Pledge.” On the next page, switch by clicking the circle next to the pledge level you now want. Scroll to the bottom and press “Continue” and follow the prompts from there.

Any questions, please ask on Kickstarter or email support@hapilabs.com!

It’s Your Lunch – Enjoy It!

I asked one of my close friends to try out the HAPIfork. He’s a very gracious yet highly “go-getter” person, a Type A Driver VP of Sales, well over 6 feet tall who puts away a high-energy, big man’s amount of food. I sincerely wondered whether the fork vibrating as he ate quickly (er… very quickly) would make him want to chuck the fork across the room.

His response was that it was definitely annoying. He wasn’t sure what to do when it vibrated – I suspect he was eating so quickly that he couldn’t slow down enough for it to wait 8 seconds between bites. (The forks that are for sale will have adjustable intervals.) But he added that he liked the idea of slowing down mid-day, of really enjoying his lunch. He felt it was something he cherished that he didn’t always remember to do.

I like the idea of slowing down and smelling the roses in the middle of the day.

It was he who suggested “It’s your lunch – enjoy it!” Because it was his lunch, and — even someone who hates being held back by anything or anyone — extracting all the value he possibly could from his lunch was very appealing.

As it turns out, Larry Magid had the same type of experience.

HAPIfork Dissassembled

The prototypes have been in the hands of some of the more lucky HAPILABS staff, and that includes me!

How the Fork Works

In short: pretty simply. I turn it on by depressing a button at the base. Then I eat with it, just exactly like using a regular fork. It vibrates if it goes into my mouth more frequently than its setting (currently 8 seconds). If it vibrates, I wait a little bit before the next bite to make sure that it doesn’t vibrate again. Mostly it just reminds me, “Another forkful already?”

My Experience So Far

First, yes of course I’m biased! But I’ll give you my impression and you can decide to be as skeptical as you wish.

Well as it turns out, I think odd things! For example, one time when the fork vibrated I caught myself thinking “NO – wait! That’s not fair! That last bite was tiny – I have more room in mouth….!”  And then I realized, “Oh just hang on, the point is not to stuff as much food into my mouth as fast as possible after all, is it?” Hmmmm.

HAPIfork dissassembled

The HAPIfork comes apart easily for washing.

It feels a little bit like what I guess my roommate’s dog experienced during clicker training. I don’t really have to work hard at being mindful, because the fork reminds me to be mindful at a visceral level, like body awareness. Of course I get my rewards when the fork does NOT vibrate, so it’s not exactly the same. So it is like the fork is training me to be more mindful automatically. I know that sounds like a paradox, but so it goes.

The Fork

So many people have asked about cleaning the fork that I have a photo here of it disassembled. The outer casing is dishwasher safe.

The inner part of the fork slips out easily.

I also am a picky person when it comes to the weight of the utensil. I  was a little bit concerned about the circumference, but despite the fact I have small hands (I’m just under 5′ tall, or 1.51m), it was fine to eat with and I liked the weight.

Yikes! HAPI-imposters!

We’re everywhere, except a few times, it’s not us! There are contests and competitions – there are even people posing as us on Twitter! (wow!)

So, let’s be clear:

In general on social media, we’re HAPILABS. That’s on facebook, pinterest, and youtube as well as other social media sites as scoop.it, google+, and others.

Any other sites are set up by other people and are outside our control. If you have any questions, please add in the comments. I’ll update as we find things that are confusing, but again – contact us if you have questions. feedback@hapilabs.com