Continuum is now called Tonari and we have a new website we'd like you to visit.
Continuum enables people to naturally converse and feel present together even while apart, transforming remote work and social environments into seamlessly connected spaces.
Through improved connectivity and access to opportunity, we envision a future where people are empowered to live and work more flexibly from anywhere.
Tokyo is a gravity well for diverse and industrious people. With more than a quarter of Japan’s population, it's the largest metropolis in the world. But extreme urbanization brings a host of social problems.
For many, high costs of living mean long commutes and longer working hours to make better wages. With more stress, and less time for family, health, and other activities, quality of life suffers.
At the same time, the migration of youth to the city is leaving older generations behind. Small towns across Japan are vanishing along with their traditions. Few are left to care for the elderly, and those who remain and idealise life with their families in the countryside must often give up opportunities for better work and education.
While remote working and services continue to grow, the pace of innovation in the city grows even faster. But what if we focused innovation on connecting these places? What if we could bring disparate worlds together so seamlessly that the need to travel long distances for work, education, and services could be virtually eliminated?
a startup entrepreneur from Tokyo could start her new business from Nagano, while having the same access to her team and talent in the city?
What if parents could spend most mornings and evenings working from home with their families, avoiding peak hour commutes?
What if an elderly farmer in rural Shimane could check in with his physician in Tokyo from a local community center? What if a student could take advanced science courses not available at her local school?
What if large manufacturers could connect their research labs, production centers, and sales offices, eliminating millions of hours of human travel and associated expenses?
Today's work environments are moving forward, but existing tools fall far short of their potential to enable natural and effortless communication. Instead, people face technical issues and bad user experiences that force them to adapt to the rigid forms of technology, and the emotional essence of conversation and collaboration is lost. When tools continuously and subtly fail, breakdowns in communication and trust can only be mended through travel and face-to-face meetings.
Pushing technology and design to its edge, while focusing on the emotional qualities and nuances of human connection, we believe we can drive tremendous advancements to greatly improve remote connectivity and access to opportunity, creating a future where people are empowered to live and work more flexibly from anywhere.
We call it Continuum
a platform that enables people to naturally converse and feel present together even while apart, transforming remote work and social environments into seamlessly connected spaces. Merging software, hardware, cloud services, and architecture, Continuum’s innovative interfaces enable people to more easily talk, collaborate, share updates, build relationships, and maintain strong bonds.
High-fidelity virtual doorways between rooms, designed architecturally to fit naturally into spaces to portray greater realism, emotional connection, and physical presence.
Additional lightweight interfaces provide an ambient sense of presence for people in remote locations, making it fast and frictionless to initiate conversations through portals.
Innovative ways to quickly capture, share, and play-back status updates, allowing groups and teams to feel more connected and informed throughout the day.
Machine learning, voice recognition, and computer vision enable Continuum to automatically assist with note taking, sharing updates, and scheduling conversations.
Continuum is a new social enterprise, started by a team of engineers, designers, activists, makers, and dreamers. We are building a diverse team of people with proven track records of impact, including top engineers from Google, industry-leading designers, and digital organizers with strong connections to startups, freelancers, and social innovators around the world.
Continuum is a social enterprise. Technology isn't about disruption, it's about creating value.
We want to enhance people’s lives through better technology and design, with the potential to impact social problems caused by extreme urbanization. As a social enterprise, we aim to keep our social mission front and center, remain transparent with our supporters, and openly and continually engage with diverse organizations and communities that can benefit from our platform and guide our development.
We know Continuum can benefit modern work environments, and can be made affordable to large companies and tech startups to advance its success in the workplace. We’re also driven by opportunities for broader social impact, and so we’re seeking additional funding that will enable us to explore more ways to make Continuum accessible to everyone. We’ve started with a small grant from the Nippon Foundation and support from our team and community, and now we are looking for support from a wider audience who share our passion for social innovation.
For more general information about our project, please refer to Continuum FAQ page.