Every once in a while, I stumble upon something in the crowd funding sites. This time, it’s on the IndieGoGo site. It’s a campaign for something called the TellSpec. That doesn’t really tell you much. Especially anything about why it might be revolutionary for Celiacs.
Try this on for size:
You want to know what’s in your food before you buy it, before you order it, and before you eat it – because your health depends on what you eat.
Many foods contain chemicals and allergens that we want to avoid. But it can be difficult to know whether these chemicals and allergens are in your food or not. How can you tell if your food contains the nutrients you need? What about things like sodium, gluten or trans fats that you might be trying to avoid? Food labels can give us some information if they’re available, but they are not always intelligible and some ingredients may not even be reported.
We have invented a system called TellSpec combining a spectrometer and a unique algorithm to tell you the allergens, chemicals, nutrients, calories, and ingredients in your food.
It’s small enough to fit on a keyring. It communicates with your cell phone. You push a button, it uses it’s spectrometer to get a reading off of the food, then sends that reading to a server. That server puts the reading through it’s database, and returns a list of ingredients based on that reading.
Potentially, you could take a reading off of the food you’re about to eat at a restaurant, and know, nearly instantaneously, whether it contains any gluten. If it delivers on that, it really would be revolutionary for anyone with Celiac Disease.
Of course, it will depend on just how sensitive it really is. It can find the gluten in a slice of whole wheat bread, but can it find the gluten from a cross contamination? Can it determine if the soup you’re about to eat was thickened with flour? Can it tell you whether the seasoning on your steak contains gluten? If it’s sensitive enough to do those things, it will truly be one of the most revolutionary things to happen for Celiacs in years.
Right now, you can contribute to the campaign and receive a TellSpec before they’re made available to the public. It requires a $200 contribution, and only until about 195 more of the $200 contributions are made, then it will be going up to $250. I didn’t see anything that indicated how much the price would be once it was available to the public.