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The Aurora headband plays lights and sounds for lucid dreaming with a smart alarm clock to help you sleep better.
Aurora is the world's most powerful sleep sensing device for dream augmentation.
Aurora is the world's most powerful sleep sensing device for dream augmentation.
1,428 backers pledged $239,094 to help bring this project to life.

Aurora DreamBand 3D-Printed Cases Have Arrived!

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Greetings friends!

In our last update we announced that we are finally nearing completion of the Aurora's enclosure design. We'd like to clarify that all modifications to our earlier enclosure designs have been necessary to fit our finalized PCB design, and that we used the opportunity to ensure Aurora's LED light delivery during dreams met our insanely high standards.  

As part of the verification process for the final case design, we ordered 3D prints to be made using a high-quality SLA printer. Here is an exploded view of all the pieces:

The enclosure consists of 6 pieces.
The enclosure consists of 6 pieces.

 The parts arrived over the weekend, however there was one unfortunate setback. During transit the front enclosure piece was exposed to too much heat and warped significantly - enough to make it impossible to fully assemble the unit.

Here you can see the warpage preventing the front and back pieces from coming together.
Here you can see the warpage preventing the front and back pieces from coming together.

Fortunately, the rest of the pieces were largely unaffected and so we were able to verify that much of the build is right on target. We did notice a few minor issues preventing easy assembly - for example the SD card was obstructing our pushbutton -  and are already implementing those minor hotfixes now while preparing to 3D print what we hope to be our final case design!

We were very happy to see our Dream Light lenses functioning as we had anticipated - shining brightly through the back of the case and over each eye. It has been a difficult design challenge but are proud to share that our final design accomplishes the objective of non-invasive light delivery rather well!

New light reflector - the clear lenses do a great job of diffusing the light without reducing the brightness too much. Our earlier case designs attenuated too much light.
New light reflector - the clear lenses do a great job of diffusing the light without reducing the brightness too much. Our earlier case designs attenuated too much light.

As mentioned in previous updates, creating the mold represents the longest lead time so we are working nights and weekends in order to finish as quickly as possible and minimize further delay. However, creating the mold represents one of the single most expensive aspects of the project which is why we must painstakingly verify the design before we place the order.

As soon as we see the entire build assembled and functional we will be placing our mass order and begin the injection molding process. And as our primary stakeholders we apologize for not doing a great job keeping you updated on our progress. We will continue to work hard and keep you informed. 

We would like to thank everyone again for their humbling patience and understanding throughout this incredibly long and exciting journey. We have sacrificed many hours of sleep to get where we are today, but are now more confident than ever that it will all be worth it for the dreams to come. We will be working hard to stay in more frequent touch so stay tuned for new updates! For now, its back to work!

Stay lucid everybody!

iWinks Team

Aurora Design-For-Manufacturing Update

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Dear trusted backers, 

we are very sorry for the recent radio silence. Over a year ago you chose us to represent your interests in exploring the revolutionary crowdfunded space of connected dream exploration. Together, we set out to build a device ahead of its time - a sleep-sensing headband designed to enhance dreams!

We feel terrible that we've let you down a few times by providing ship dates prematurely that we were unable to fulfill. We know it makes us look unprofessional, however we've got one shot at this and need to do it right the first time. We are going to make it up to you by delivering some substantial updates moving forward - beginning today!

Manufacturing Update!

We're are truly in a transitionary period in the iwinks labs. Now that our circuit boards are completed, we are placing batch orders to test our molds and supply chain for mass production. Check out the assembled circuit boards below - they will be used to build the Aurora Dreamband Beta units for our Master Developer and Founder Level backers!!

First batch circuit order!
First batch circuit order!

While we have become experts of building Aurora Dreamband in the lab, we quickly learned that mass-producing thousands of brain-sensing headbands is a different beast altogether. So, to do this effectively without compromising on quality, we have been working with manufacturing teams to create manufacturing molds for each of the 3 principal components which make up the Aurora Dreamband: 

1) Hypoallergenic headstrap with soft, plush silver sensors 

2) Circuit board with cutting edge sleep tracking and dream enhancement technology 

3) Enclosure to house the PCB + Battery, and attaches to the headstrap 

We've come a long way in finalizing the designs and molds for each component since our last update:

1) Hypoallergenic headstrap with soft, plush silver sensors

Design: Finished

iwinks professional-grade Headstraps
iwinks professional-grade Headstraps

 Mold: Finished, awaiting verification

Mold is completed, straps ready to be mass-produced
Mold is completed, straps ready to be mass-produced

We received our first small batch order of headstraps from our factory last week and verified that the mold design is ready for production! 

Our 2nd batch order for the headstraps appear ready for production!
Our 2nd batch order for the headstraps appear ready for production!

We are awaiting a final set of confirmation samples to be tested with the rest of the build (below)! We will then place the full manufacturing order for the headstraps!

2) Circuit board - connected, low power, high-performance cutting-edge sleep tracking and dream enhancement technologies onboard.

Design: Finished

Aurora PCB
Aurora PCB

 Mold: Finished

we've ordered 100 PCBs, and assembled the first 12
we've ordered 100 PCBs, and assembled the first 12

 We recently placed our first batch order for 100 PCBs and have begun assembling them to build the first few early production units. We intend to use these boards to fulfill the beta units owed to our Master and Founder-Level backers. 

We have already begun sourcing and ordering components at larger quantities to prepare for our full production order. If the enclosures (below) passes our inspection we will be ready to assemble the full unit, test, and then ship our beta units to our higher-level backers!

3) Enclosure - houses our circuit board and detaches from our headstrap sensors for easy cleaning & maintenance. 

Design: In our last update we were finalizing this design with the following design objectives:

  • move the lights away from the center to maintain independent eye stimulus
  • curve the back of the unit to match human forehead curvature 
  • stay true to the original design and clean up unnecessary angles and cuts

given this feedback, we had our design group create the final concept mockups using our final PCB layout (design subject to change):

Final Concept Art for Aurora's case
Final Concept Art for Aurora's case

Out of all the mockups, "Sleek"  was our favorite and we decided to move forward to a 3D design.

Case, front view
Case, front view

 According to our earlier tests, we knew the lights should be focused more towards the back of the case, closer to the eyes. So we spent some time focusing on this problem while trying to minimizing unnecessary bulk.

Dream light windows were specially designed to focus the light towards the eyes, without blocking users' field of view
Dream light windows were specially designed to focus the light towards the eyes, without blocking users' field of view
Back of the case attaches to our comfy headstrap
Back of the case attaches to our comfy headstrap

Our design team spent some long hours finalizing those changes last week. We are very excited to receive the first 3D-printed test cases for our final design in the next few days! We will be focused on assembling the units in the lab and getting a final round of feedback before we create the final confirmation samples and place our final production order!

Hard tooling  - the last major hurdle

Now that the circuit boards are ready to be mass-produced, the hard tool is our longest manufacturing lead time. It will take 6 weeks to create the tool, then another 6 weeks to create our thousands of plastic cases using that tool. We dont want to delay shipment any longer so once we verify our case design from lab tests we will be placing the hard tool order.

And we are doing everything in our power to avoid further delays - during the weeks of hard-tool lead-time we will be focused on having all the other components in our labs ready for assembly, so that when we do receive the cases from our factories we will only be a matter of days from shipping!

Since our progress on the case is the limiting factor for creating a final production schedule, it therefore determines the earliest possible ship date for Aurora. We have offered production timelines prematurely in the past and are choosing to wait until we have a secure timeline before sharing it and creating expectations we cannot fulfill.

Final Production Schedule: T.B.D. by enclosure progress, currently est. 3-4 months

Commitment to Excellence

The progress we've made on Aurora reflects our strong commitment to engineering excellence: we are embedding a precision sleep-tracking algorithm into a wearable device and to our knowledge, this has never been done before in a consumer device! We decided to do this by listening to our community during our kickstarter campaign, and while it did set us back in our ship date, it was the best possible strategic pivot we could have made to ensure the longevity of Aurora Dreamband and any future iwinks devices to come.

At this point the bulk of the final work is in the hands of our MFG partners, so we ask that you please be patient with us as we finish the last few steps correctly. We promise you will have your Aurora before you know it!

Help Us Finish Strong! Please Share this Update!

You can help by continuing to SHARE our posts and talk to your friends about us! These efforts directly affect preorder sales which allow us to move forward quickly as we finish the last few steps. Every share counts! 

Thanks again for your patience while we finish the preparations for manufacturing. We have some big updates coming soon about our new website, alpha app release and more!

iwinks team

New Case Design, Updated Aurora Production Schedule and More!!

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Hello again backers,

We have lots of exciting news to share today! Aurora, the lucid dreaming headband is well on its way towards production. We have locked in our circuit and headband design and are now working hard with our expert manufacturing team to lock in the final piece of the puzzle: our case design.

Case Design is the Final Step Before Shipping
Case Design is the Final Step Before Shipping

Our case design is stronger than ever and we are nearly finished with all work on product design. Conductive snap buttons are designed directly into the case so you can easily remove the headband portion for cleaning. There are just a few things left to finalize with this design before we place our full manufacturing order:  

  • move the lights away from the center to maintain independent eye stimulus 
  • curve the back of the unit to match human forehead curvature
  • Stay true to the original design and clean up unnecessary angles and cuts  

We expect to be finished with this final step within the next few weeks and will update you as soon as we have confirmation. We are truly so close to being done and cant wait to go into full production! Towards that end we have already placed a down payment on a first small batch of production units. 

Updated Production Schedule   

We know how important it is that we deliver Aurora to you quickly and have created a revised production schedule with our manufacturing team to help give you an idea of how close we really are to shipping.

Our first small-batch production schedule
Our first small-batch production schedule

We are going through the final revisions of last design deliverable- our electronics enclosure - now. Our manufacturing has already begun creating 5 production units for our testing and verification. 

This will allow us to verify the full production build together for the first time. If everything goes well we can then move directly into full production, beginning the 3 month countdown till ship-day mentioned in our last update

And that's it! We truly appreciate your patience while we finish this job the right way. 

Circuit Design is Locked - In 

We are proud to announce that our electronic designs have been printed, tested and are now 100% verified and locked-in

Final PCB designs work like a dream!
Final PCB designs work like a dream!

This means we have fully moved our production resources to industrial design of the enclosure and moving faster than ever to our full manufacturing phase. 

Alpha Testing

We have officially begun our alpha test program with our fully functional circuit boards. Our goal is to collect lots of sleep data and user testimonials quickly to make the most of the limited time we have before we ship Aurora to you.

Towards that end, we are collecting a library of clean & high quality biosensor sleep data to compared against our clinic-proven datasets. The other accelerometer-based sleep tracking methods on the market are inherently flawed and our biosensor solution stands out as the industry leader for commercial sleep tracking.

Slow Wave Sleep, collected by Aurora
Slow Wave Sleep, collected by Aurora

Slow wave sleep, or deep sleep, is considered important for consolidating new declarative memories. SWS is characterized by high-amplitude low-frequency brain oscillations.

Phasic REM, collected by Aurora
Phasic REM, collected by Aurora

REM is where dreams occur and consists of tonic and phasic REM stages. REM is characterized by sharp rapid eye movements with similarities to waking stages, featuring increased frontal gamma waves (25-40Hz) oscillations during lucid dreaming. Our sensors are designed to track gamma waves and provide a reliable marker of dream lucidity.

This dataset is quickly becoming the basis for our open source sleep research program - more details on that coming in our next update.

App progress

We plan to release our app before we ship Aurora, and hope to share the iOS alpha release date in our next update. Android users - don't worry!! - we will fully support Android!! We are creating our proof of concept on iOS first before we port the design over - this is a common strategy for startups since the iOS ecosystem is easier to develop on multiple devices quickly compared to the dozens of various Android iterations on the market. 

iwinks at Clever Talks

Our CEO had the pleasure of speaking at Clever Talks - an incredible conference for thinkers changing the world. Danny shared the stage with Prince Ea and some other influential thinkers. We hope you enjoy iwinks' inception story and encourage you to take a chance to pursue YOUR DREAMS!

Believe it or not there is lots more exciting news brewing in the iwinks lab and we cant wait to share it with you!

Until next time, stay lucid!

iwinks team

Stay connected with iwinks:

on Facebook
on Facebook
on Twitter
on Twitter
On Google Plus
On Google Plus
             

Aurora Production Underway, LAST CHANCE to Preorder at Discounted Rate, Mobile App Progress and More!

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 Dear loyal backers,  

Today we are closer than ever to shipping Aurora. We have finished our final circuit design and sent it off to be printed. The last design had a few minor bugs including poor signal quality and we knew we couldn't ship the design in that state. Our final design solves these problems and improves on Aurora's functionality while delivering on all of the additional features we promised during our kickstarter campaign

new iwinks website is in development
new iwinks website is in development

Design Update

Smallest & Lightest formfactor ever!  

As you know Aurora's headband snaps onto the enclosure using conductive snap buttons to enable easy cleaning. We decided to move the snaps from the PCB to the enclosure as they introduced too much noise into our signal. This change means more precise onboard sleep tracking and a lighter, smaller formfactor less likely to impede sleep comfort.

Longer life-cycle!

Our battery life is now longer than ever with enhanced power savings features.

Brick-proofing!

We have employed preventative measures to make sure that our firmware updates and tinkering developers will never brick the device.

Aurora's final design is on its way to being printed.
Aurora's final design is on its way to being printed.

This final iteration has led to increased delays and costs, but we knew it would be worth it. The good news is that we've never been more confident in our design. In fact we are so confident that we’ve already placed the full manufacturing order for our embedded biosensor solution.

Manufacturing Update

We are now in the process of handing over our designs to our manufacturing partners to prepare for the final manufacturing run. They will be creating the final production prototypes while also implementing what is known as design for manufacturing - or modifying the prototype designs to make them easier to build in mass quantities.  

That's right – at this point, the engineering work is done and the complete design is on its way to production. You heard us right, the design is officially out of our hands and entering production. Our manufacturing group is taking the latest design iteration and making the necessary changes to make it work with our final PCB, while preparing the (d)esign (f)or (m)anufacturing. 

This is known as DFM and is best left to the experts. Meanwhile we are prototyping the latest circuit design to ensure all the fixes are good to go. This is now the final step in pre-production, and are excited to plow ahead into production.

Aurora in DFM now
Aurora in DFM now

App Progress

Meanwhile, we are working diligently with our design team to develop the iwinks Web Service and App. As previously mentioned the free iwinks app will provide the following features:

  • Friendly Alarm Clock Wakes You Gently  
  • Dream Journal Designed to Increase Dream Recall  
  • And More!!!
the free iwinks app will be the de-facto lucid dreaming service
the free iwinks app will be the de-facto lucid dreaming service

Aurora users will enjoy the following upgraded features:

  • Seamless Control of Aurora's Settings  
  • Aurora Stimulus Creation  
  • Clinic-Validated Sleep Pattern Graphs  
  • And More!!!

Below is a sneak peak of the stimulus creation screen. We plan to nurture a community of oneironauts experimenting with new stimuli and this feature will fuel that effort.

Create your own dream stimulus using the iwinks app!
Create your own dream stimulus using the iwinks app!

Last Chance to Pre-Order Aurora at the Current Price!

As we roll out the final Aurora production design, iwinks mobile app and new website we will be raising our retail Aurora price to cover the resulting increasing costs. If you haven't already, this is officially your last chance to pre-order Aurora at the current price. We appreciate all of our kickstarter and preorder customers immensely and truly wouldn't have been able to do this without your help. Thanks for making our dream a reality.

On the blog

If you haven't yet, check out guest blogger and expert lucid dreaming author Robert Waggoner weigh in on how to use light stimulus for lucid dream induction. We plan to put his advice to use as we begin our alpha tests in the next few weeks!

iwinks

~~

In loving memory Robert K. Hunt  

Three weeks ago the iwinks family suffered a tragic event when we lost our consulting circuit designer. Robert K Hunt was a pro engineer responsible for bringing many electronic devices to market including the first prototype for the Microsoft Band. His genius influenced many of Aurora's important design decisions. Robert had been helping us lay out our electronic design and we had nearly finished the job when he passed away unexpectedly. It was a tragic loss to his family, the San Diego tech community and the Aurora/iwinks team. He will be dearly missed. This update is dedicated to his memory.

In loving memory, Robert K. Hunt
In loving memory, Robert K. Hunt

Stay connected with iwinks:

on Facebook
on Facebook
On Twitter
On Twitter
On Google Plus
On Google Plus

Aurora Manufacturing Progress & Announcing The iWinks Service!!

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Hello backers,

its been a long couple of weeks here at iwinks HQ and we are very excited to report our progress today ;) Aurora is well on its way to production, and below is a sneak peak of Aurora's look and feel. For a more thorough production plan, see our previous update #28

The Brand-New Aurora
The Brand-New Aurora

Manufacturing Progress Update

When we sent out our last update, we had a nearly-functional Aurora PCB plagued by a couple of problems (bugs). Our team has worked hard all week long to identify those issues and have successfully identified those bugs and implemented hotfixes on one of our prototype boards. in the meantime we have been running baseline tests with our small batch of (mostly) functional boards!

Say Hello to our project manager Nisha seen here running some baseline headband tests
Say Hello to our project manager Nisha seen here running some baseline headband tests

Our diligence and commitment has paid off providing us with confidence to re-design a %100 working PCB, having all the functionality Aurora requires. Our team is working hard right now to send that design off to be printed and assembled!! Once submitted, will take 2-3 weeks to produce and deliver to us. We will let you know when we have started that countdown. 

Andrew working with our circuit tech Jerry to modify and power up a new pcb
Andrew working with our circuit tech Jerry to modify and power up a new pcb

Chances are high that it will come back to us bug-free, at which point we will be able to lock-in our PCB design and we are on our way to shipping Aurora!

The iwinks Service

Meanwhile, as our engineers, coders and technicians are working hard on Aurora, our creative team is in heavy development of a new website and mobile app; our existing website is receiving a complete overhaul and our app service is nearing completion of the initial UX design phase. The iwinks service is already taking shape as the de-facto lucid dreaming service. Neither are fully developed but our core functionality is beginning to look really promising!

Our app will be cornerstone of our platform by connecting iwinks users to their dreams and eventually, to each other. The app will train users to be better lucid dreamers in a fun, natural and engaging way. We plan to offer a basic version for free so that everyone - regardless of income level - can experience awesome dreams! Since most of our backers use iOS we are building the app prototype for that platform. Here is a sneak peak of our app progress (much will change). 

Basic App Features Include:

  • Friendly Alarm Clock Wakes You Gently
  • Dream Journal Designed to Increase Dream Recall
  • And More!!!
Wake Up in Your Dreams with our Free App!
Wake Up in Your Dreams with our Free App!

Aurora Users Will Enjoy Additional App Features:

  • Seamless Control of Aurora's Settings 
  • Aurora Stimulus Creation 
  • Clinic-Validated Sleep Pattern Graphs
  • And More!!!

Our SDK/API is also in development which will allow our developer community to leverage Aurora for nearly any creative means they can dream up! You can expect more on that soon ;)

Last Chance to PreOrder Aurora at Reduced Price!

To fund our continuing efforts to release the best lucid dreaming service available, we will be raising Aurora's price soon, so GET YOUR PREORDERS IN NOW before its too late!! Remember, Aurora is ahead of its time; a clinic-validated, intelligent, BLE-ready sleep tracking device that measures brainwaves and movements throughout the night to help you direct dream mood and content! 

We need your help!

If you love what we're doing we encourage you to support our continued efforts to create a lucid dreaming service rooted in real science and technology. Our core team of expert engineers, software developers and neuroscientists have worked for years without a paycheck and your contributions make it possible for us to design and release a ground-breaking disruptive product like Aurora. Now lets finish building it together and get it to you ASAP! Please connect with us on social media and share our posts, preorder our headband, or make a donation to our paypal account (@  admin@iwinks.org). 

Thanks and stay lucid!

iwinks