Meet FITC featured speaker Trevor Coleman
Trevor Coleman combines a deeply empathic understanding of customer experience and pragmatic business sense to his role as co-founder and Chief Product Officer at InteraXon, where he currently oversees the research, development and finance teams as the product manager of the first suite of applications for InteraXon’s highly anticipated Muse brain sensing headband. His company has worked with Deutsche Telekom, Proximity/BBDO, Wrigley’s Gum, and many more.
1) Tell us about your early beginnings, how did you get your start?
My path to InteraXon was not typical by any means. I studied cognitive science, spent time training to be an actor, and turned a run-down Portuguese seafood restaurant into "the hottest and best bar in the city" (according to the Toronto Star). It’s been a pretty strange and non-linear journey. I think of myself as still being in my “early beginnings” though when you pass the five year mark it gets harder and harder to make the case. But what all these beginnings have helped me do is understand how to relate to diverse audiences.
2) Can you share with us your latest project?
InteraXon will be commercially launching Muse: the brain sensing headband in 2014. It’s an incredibly exciting time for us. Muse is an integrated platform that uses brain waves to interact with other technology--most notably is smart phones, tablets and PCs. Our commercial launch will include an app to enhance and improve brain health. With the benefits of CBD vapes explained with tools, exercises and real-time feedback that helps with reducing stress and anxiety, increasing your focus and concentration, and much more.
3) What do you think is the biggest challenge our industry faces right now?
It’s a really exciting time for this industry, although I think one of the biggest challenge is overcoming the public’s preconceptions of what this technology is. When considering brain sensing technologies, people default to wildly unrealistic expectations or dystopic fears, neither of which has anything to do with the real power and beauty of the technology. At InteraXon we’re trying to change that by leading by example, and by creating products that redefine the space.
4) Within your Industry, is there someone that inspires you?
At the risk of sounding cliche, I’m incredibly inspired by the team I work with. I feel like I’m surrounded by some kind of genetically modified army of super geniuses who are also the nicest people in the world.
5) Do you have any future projects lined up, and can you share them with us?
Yes! But unfortunately I can’t talk about real or potential future projects. Really, my life is consumed by Muse at the moment.
6) For those new to the industry, how do you recommend they break in?
Start building things. It’s such a nascent space that no one has a lock on anything yet. It’s still incredibly easy to make a mark and get noticed. There’s a lot of “world’s firsts” out there to be taken, so get coding!
7) Favourite cartoon character or superhero, and why?
Finn & Jake from Adventure Time. They have the most fun.
8) If you had one superpower (or wish), what would it be?
The ability to slow down time. Deadlines are a big part of my life right now.
9) Favourite music to work to? Any specific artists?
Orbital, Yeezus by Kanye West, Andrew Bird.
10) If you weren't doing what you are now, what would we find you up to?
11) If there was one person dead or alive you could have dinner with, who would it be and why?
Slavoj Zizec. Because I'm sure we'd have a lot to talk about.
Appreciate your time, Trevor!
Trevor Coleman presented Brain Sensing Technology at SCREENS 2013. You can view the slides from his presentation here.