The prototypes have been in the hands of some of the more lucky HAPILABS staff, and that includes me!
How the Fork Works
In short: pretty simply. I turn it on by depressing a button at the base. Then I eat with it, just exactly like using a regular fork. It vibrates if it goes into my mouth more frequently than its setting (currently 8 seconds). If it vibrates, I wait a little bit before the next bite to make sure that it doesn’t vibrate again. Mostly it just reminds me, “Another forkful already?”
My Experience So Far
First, yes of course I’m biased! But I’ll give you my impression and you can decide to be as skeptical as you wish.
Well as it turns out, I think odd things! For example, one time when the fork vibrated I caught myself thinking “NO – wait! That’s not fair! That last bite was tiny – I have more room in mouth….!” And then I realized, “Oh just hang on, the point is not to stuff as much food into my mouth as fast as possible after all, is it?” Hmmmm.
It feels a little bit like what I guess my roommate’s dog experienced during clicker training. I don’t really have to work hard at being mindful, because the fork reminds me to be mindful at a visceral level, like body awareness. Of course I get my rewards when the fork does NOT vibrate, so it’s not exactly the same. So it is like the fork is training me to be more mindful automatically. I know that sounds like a paradox, but so it goes.
So many people have asked about cleaning the fork that I have a photo here of it disassembled. The outer casing is dishwasher safe.
The inner part of the fork slips out easily.
I also am a picky person when it comes to the weight of the utensil. I was a little bit concerned about the circumference, but despite the fact I have small hands (I’m just under 5′ tall, or 1.51m), it was fine to eat with and I liked the weight.