A Different Kind of Sync

Laura Yecies
CEO of SyncThink Inc.

I have had the good fortune to enjoy over 25 years of building a range of software businesses – enterprise and consumer – big companies and startups.   I loved the challenge and am proud of the positive impact of these products which have touched millions (SugarSync, Catch) and in some cases hundreds of millions (Netscape, Yahoo) of people.  As I looked toward my professional goals for the next 25 years, however, I felt there was a void I had not filled.  Perhaps it was my family values – growing up surrounded by doctors (both parents, father-in-law, multiple siblings, aunts, uncle, cousins) and having two sons and two daughters-in-law in healthcare (3 as MD’s and one PhD in cancer research, I’ve always wanted to be doing more to improve people’s lives in a more humanistic and direct way.

Many of the software products I worked on democratize access – bringing the proprietary big company technology to small businesses or consumers (e.g.SugarSync, ZoneAlarm).  Although the healthcare industry has traditionally been a late adopter, with the advent of cloud and mobile technologies and increasingly VR and AR – we are at a tipping point and I knew that using technology to drive this type of healthcare democratization and the potentially large associated businesses was what I wanted to work on next.

Through a confluence of fortunate events and connections I met the team at SyncThink and was immediately impressed by both the science (based on years of D.O.D. funded research) and the potential impact of its technology.  SyncThink has developed innovative eye-tracking technology analytics, delivered in customized Samsung VR headsets, that provide objective metrics for visual attention and dynamic orientation. It turns out that these metrics provide critical information about brain health by measuring our orientation and ability to pay attention to our environment.  Eye-tracking analytics can show patterns that correlate with such serious issues as concussion, ADHD, dementia, marijuana impairment and sleep deprivation.  The first application in sports in concussion and performance management but there is an even bigger potential impact in these other fields as well as occupational safety.

I was personally excited about the immediate term market – we are focusing on bringing our brain health platform to college and professional sports as well as the clinics who serve them.  As the mother of 3 sons who played Lacrosse, Rugby and Football in college and a daughter who played high school Lacrosse I resonated with that need recalling how I held my breath on the sidelines watching some serious and aggressive “contact”.   There are thousands of athletes whose health we can protect and improve with SyncThink.  I am thrilled to see SyncThink being deployed in universities such as the Pac-12 and beyond and love knowing that our home town champion Golden State Warriors are using SyncThink at the next level to both protect their players as well as measure and enhance their performance.

Of course with Sync in the name I knew it was “beshert” (destined) for me to join and was excited to get started.  We have lots of new tech and programs in the works – stay tuned for more to come!