Halo, The Brain-Improving Wearable, Raises $1.5 Million

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While the thought of applying electricity directly to the brain in unsupervised conditions is, to some, a bit scary, Halo Neuroscience has gotten over a million smackers to allow you do just that. Halo, a company that will produce a wearable device to “boost brain function” has closed a $1.5 million round led by Marc Andreessen of Andreessen Horowitz and Jeff Clavier of SoftTech VC.

First, understand that this isn’t a One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest simulator. Writes Dan Chao, CEO:

Halo’s technology employs a range of non-invasive, low energy, battery operated stimulation modalities that work on the nervous system to boost cognition. Halo builds on the field of neuromodulation, where recent science has employed electromagnetic waveforms, infrared light, ultrasound, physical and other stimulation techniques.

What will the company do with the cash? They will primarily work on IP and safety issues with the Food and Drug Administration to ensure that the product doesn’t make us all hallucinate that we’re being hunted by the North American Sasquatch.

Founded by Stanford-educated neuroscience researcher Dan Chao and engineer Brett Wingeier along with Amol Sarva, a consumer mobile guru with oodles of hardware experience, the company is on solid intellectual footing.

“Halo makes a technology that stimulates brain function in sick people and healthy people. It makes the brain work better — a wide range of potential effects from accelerating learning to improving body movement control,” said Sarva. “The company isn’t saying exactly what they are working on first but the field is a big new area — not just sensing things in the brain or ‘reading’ it, but sending waves into the brain and ‘writing’ to it.”

Sarva admits the whole thing seems far-fetched.

“Dan and Amol have been in neuroscience for years. Have heard about this fringe technology since as early as 2002. Nobody believed it was real! We didn’t either. Until we tried it,” he said.

While the team isn’t claiming you’ll gain Magneto-like abilities upon using the device, it looks to be an interesting startup doing something far more important than making it easier for you to open your front door remotely. Who knows: maybe the company will allow you to add psychokinesis to your list of skills.