About Craig Hennessey

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So far Craig Hennessey has created 33 blog entries.
15 06, 2013

Eye-tracking for those who need it most

By |2017-08-25T08:59:22+00:00June 15th, 2013|Applications|Comments Off on Eye-tracking for those who need it most

Eye tracking systems are amazing tools for assistive communication. Disabilities such as ALS, MS, locked-in syndrome quadriplegia, and even repetitive strain injuries can significantly impair a person's ability to communicate. I really can't even imagine what it would be like, communication is so fundamental to our everyday lives. Back when I was completing my PhD, the ALS Society of BC held an engineering design competition where students designed devices to improve the quality of life of people living with ALS. I entered the eye-tracking system I had been working on, and sure enough it won an innovation prize. However, the unit ultimately didn't help anyone with ALS, I only had one system and I needed it to complete my thesis!   When I started Mirametrix, I looked long and hard at supplying systems for the assistive market, but ultimately decided there was no need for another high cost system ($5,000 at the time, beyond the price point of most people). There were already players doing a great job servicing the market - LC Technologies to point out a particularly great company.   Ultimately, I never sold a single unit for assistive communication. And I have to say - I do regret that a bit, but I had a loftier goal. If I could develop an eye-tracker at a consumer price point, individuals with need of a communication device could simply head out to BestBuy and just pick one up. No need to use your insurance for support, or figure out some complex financial instruments to acquire a tool vital to quality of life.   At Gazepoint, I hope we finally reach that goal and make eye-tracking readily available to those who need it most!   [...]

6 06, 2013

Hire a Ph.D.

By |2017-08-25T08:59:22+00:00June 6th, 2013|Startup 101, Update|Comments Off on Hire a Ph.D.

An article in Macleans came out recently titled "Are Ph.D.s an academic dead zone?. Having a PhD myself, I actually have to agree with most of the points in the article: academia doesn't have room for all the PhDs that come out of universities. What's more, the deep but narrow research performed during graduate school doesn't always always make for attractive candidates for corporate position. That said, Gazepoint has 3 PhDs on staff. My PhD was in eye-tracking so definitely a good fit for this venture. All together, I've been developing eye-trackers for over 10 years now. However, Andras' PhD is in Chemistry and Julie's PhD is in Neuroscience, so on paper, the fit isn't as obvious. However, there are some skills that are necessary to successfully reach the end of the long and tedious road that is a doctorate degree. Ingenuity: a PhD thesis has to be novel; Tenacity: setbacks are continuous (talk to Julie about this!); Intelligence: just getting through the administrative hurdles takes a fair amount; Hard-work: long hours and working all weekend are the norm; Self-motivation: unless you can wrangle a few undergraduate minions, you're the lowest on the food chain, so no one will do the work for you; Willing to work for low pay with only the promise of a bright future somewhere in the murky distance: that's pretty much self-explanatory. As you can see, this set of skills right there sum up to some pretty fantastic startup team members. And it even turns out that eye-tracking may be useful in predicting Alzheimer, one of Julie's neuroscience research topics. And when it comes to fastening any component with adhesives, Andras is the man. That said, PhDs are not always necessary: [...]

1 06, 2013


By |2017-08-25T08:59:22+00:00June 1st, 2013|Update|Comments Off on Welcome!

Welcome to Gazepoint! We are excited to finally go live with our website! We have developed a revolutionary new gaze-tracking platform that will enable a wide range of gaze tracking systems, all at affordable price points. We are starting with the release of the GP3 at $350 (an introductory special discount from the standard price $750). The potential applications for eye trackers is virtually limitless, our system is perfect for marketing and usability studies, scientific research, gaming or human computer interaction (HCI) applications, or any other application you can dream up! Our goal is to establish an open platform for eye tracker application development. In supporting that goal we include a developer API and we will create a developer forum to establish a discussion community for eye tracker developers. Our hope is that YOU will create the next killer-app using gaze tracking! The web store is now open, we target shipping units by (or before) June 30, 2013. Place your order today and be the first to get your hands on the Gazepoint GP3 Desktop eye tracker. Stay tuned to this blog, we’re going to keep posting all new developments here! Cheers, Craig