Faces in the Crowd: WNC crowdfunding initiatives

From left, Jason Moore, Alyssa Moore and Vivek Menon comprise the leadership team behind a new product called CorSense. "We are not a big company, but we are passionate about helping people reach their health and performance goals," they write online. "We believe that heart rate variability is one of the most powerful tools available to achieve this." Image from CorSense's campaign page

Crowdfunding platforms make it possible for individuals and organizations of any size to harness social networks and raise start-up capital for projects that might otherwise fail due to lack of funding. Each week, Xpress highlights notable Western North Carolina crowdsourcing initiatives that may inspire readers to become new faces in the crowd.

CorSense app

CorSense uses a small, heart rate monitor and mobile phone app to let users track their heart rate variability (HRV) on a day to day basis. Founder Jason Moore says this biomarker is more useful than metrics from pedometers or heart rate monitors, likening it to “the check engine light for your entire body and mind.” He further explains: “HRV is not heart rate. HRV analyzes inter-beat variation caused by your nervous system. Your nervous system tracks the impact of everything: how you exercise, recover, eat, sleep and perceive stress.” The app also allows users to tag variables like alcohol consumption and exercise during daily check-ins. With that data and the HRV readings, the app aims to encourage healthy decisions relating to nutrition, sleep, stress and other factors. Moore aims to raise $150,000 by Thursday, Oct. 19, for tooling and manufacturing of the device that accompanies the app.

Escape Room Home

Asheville is home to several escape rooms, which challenge participants to find and solve clues, unlock doors and eventually emerge from the host building with spiking adrenaline and a sense of accomplishment. The downfall for fans of this experience, according to escapist Justin Mashburn, is that once you’ve solved a room’s puzzles, its entertainment value plummets, and it takes time to be redeveloped. Mashburn, however, has created a kit that enables enthusiasts to recreate the same fun at their homes by writing and placing clues for their friends. “It actually functions like a real, live escape room — not like a board game or table top game,” he explains. “You’re going to be putting real people in real rooms with real locks.” He aims to raise $10,000 by Friday, Oct. 13, to develop, manufacture and ship the game.

Send your crowdsourcing campaign news to kmcreynolds@mountainx.com. A limited number of campaigns will be highlighted each week, at Xpress’ discretion. Campaigns must be locally based and should represent a current project with an achievable goal. Conditions are subject to change. Read about more Western North Carolina projects here.


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About Kat McReynolds
Kat studied entrepreneurship and music business at the University of Miami and earned her MBA at Appalachian State University. Follow me @katmAVL

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