Nintendo Patents Bizarre Sleep Gaming Device

27 Jul 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Nintendo Files Patent for Ceiling Projector-Equipped Sleep Monitor.

Earlier this week, internet sleuths dug up a Nintendo patent for what appears to be the rough design of their mysterious “Quality of Life” sensor, something long touted by the company as an experimental project, but little has been officially revealed about it. As strange as it might sound to some readers, Nintendo has reportedly filed a patent for a bizarre new device which, according to Forbes contributor Dave Thier, appears to transform sleep into something of a video game.It looks like Nintendo found itself lagging behind its competitors without any such innovative product launch and had started working towards one such unique product that will people will love.While the patents could describe the final functions of Nintendo’s QOL device, things are always subject to change, as these patents protect the device’s functionality. “The portable terminal detects sensor information for assessing a user’s emotions”.

Though we are not sure what type of data the device will collect, one thing is for certain and that is about the sleeping reports that will be displayed on the walls or the ceiling. Though heart rate monitors and sleep pattern tracking devices have been out in the market for a while, we can only hope that Nintendo invests in the production of this device and comes out offering something “new” that will grab people’s attention. The information processing system assesses the user’s emotions on the basis of the sensor information.” This has something to do with Nintendo ’s plan to monitor a users’ sleep, as evidence by an image showing the device next to a bed with a projector meant to display some sort of imagery on the ceiling for when the user is falling asleep or waking up. The device design is tuned to assessing the emotions of the user based on the information received by the sensor and detected when the portable terminal is on its standby mode.

Yet all this talk about “emotion sensing” has to be more involved than just sleep monitoring, and must have some kind of applications to Nintendo’s traditional area of expertise, gaming. It would be permissible, as an example, for the sensor information to be sound information which is detected by a microphone, or image information which is captured by a camera. According to device’s abstract, it is able to record information necessary to asses a user’s emotional stance, such as capturing the sounds he/she makes with the use of in-built microphone and images with a front camera. According to a post at NeoGAF that dissects the multiple patents, Nintendo is working on a quality-of-life device that sits next to someone’s bed, constantly analyzing different variables. Overlooking the mildly creepy Big Brother implications (when Nintendo watches you sleep and logs your emotions, it’s adorable, but have Microsoft or Sony try that and see how people react), it could have some fairly significant effects on gaming itself.

He physiological readings it gets will be transmitted to a server, which will compare it with other user information and then send back feedback regarding the user’s quality of sleep. Depending on how accurate this is (I’m just going to give Nintendo the benefit of the doubt and say it produces correct results), I’m picturing a horror game that could insert an emotion-triggered scare when the device detects a user’s fear is the highest. Though the patents describe the expected functions of the QOL device from Nintendo, it should be remembered that the patent protects the functionality of the device and things could change rapidly.

There is no doubt of the fact that Sleep is one of the major acts that we do during a day and it is having huge effects on our health, physique, mentality, etc.. They could log which sections of their games produce literal smiles on people’s faces, and either tailor future elements of the game to respond to that, or at least log the data for future products.Or maybe if a user appears sad, Nintendo could suggest they play the game that has previously made them the most happy. Another idea I’ve heard tossed around is that if the sensor could sense frustration, it could knock the difficulty level down during a game after too many failures which produce a quantifiably angry user.

Though this would be a very Nintendo thing to do, I can see it further upsetting many players who get annoyed when games merely ask them if they want to lower the difficulty, nevermind actually doing it for them based on sensor data. It’s right in line with what we’ve heard about from the Quality of Life initiative before, even if it doesn’t necessarily indicate that Nintendo will release a final product that looks anything like this. Rather than having to rely on your phone or some other display to check your score/emotion tracking, the device would project the information on to your ceiling. Through all of this, I have to wonder if this emotion sensor/sleep tracker is going to be somehow directly integrated into the NX, another mysterious Nintendo project that everyone is guessing is a new console to replace the Wii U.

It uses a variety of input to give you a sleep score, which sounds like an incredibly effective way to introduce stress into an otherwise pretty relaxing activity. Nintendo has always understood something about our relationship to technology on an elemental level, something that shone through with the Wii but goes all the way back to Donkey Kong, the first game to introduce a concept of a narrative. It’s hard to say, but I can’t imagine that Nintendo would bother making something this elaborate and not have it tie into their gaming hardware at all. I’m going to reserve judgement on this strange sensor array until we know more about it, though I will admit my initial reaction is to wonder why Nintendo, which has been struggling to produce must-have hardware this past console generation, is spending time and resources on something like this.

It’s a tall order as we’ve never really seen anything like it, but Nintendo always likes to shoot for the stars, even if Mission Control is radioing a bunch of warnings to stay on their original course.

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