"I now know for a fact, as I suspected all along, that I have the power to make objects move simply by willing them to do so." No, contributing editor David H. Freedman has not lost his mind. He's describing what it was like to sample the new mind-reading video-game headset made by Emotiv ("Reality Bites"). "The technology is absolutely for real," says Freedman, a Boston-based writer and author of A Perfect Mess: The Hidden Benefits of Disorder -- How Crammed Closets, Cluttered Offices, and On-the-Fly Planning Make the World a Better Place. Freedman's next book, about why so-called experts often get things wrong, will be published in 2009.
During a 20-year career with The Wall Street Journal, Jeff Bailey grew fond of reporting on entrepreneurs. "I liked people who would take a chance," he says. "And as a reporter, you like talking to people who are less guarded." Bailey writes this month about Jeff Koeze, who runs a mail-order food company in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Koeze was more than merely unguarded, Bailey says; for 12 years, Koeze had been making an uncommon attempt to better understand himself and his business. The story, "The Education of an Educated CEO," begins on page 100.
Photographer Justin Stephens is used to teasing emotions from his subjects -- usually celebrities such as Jodie Foster, Hugh Laurie, and Terrence Howard, all of whom Stephens has captured in intense, up-close portraits. This month, he photographed our cover subject, Tan Le, and a model wearing the spider-shaped mind-reading device made by Le's company, Emotiv. "I had the model act out emotions, so the intensity and focus would come through in the photographs," Stephens says. He has shot for New York, The New York Times Magazine, Fast Company, and Time.
In 2006, photographer Erin Patrice O'Brien embarked on a two-year project to capture the lives of five adolescent mothers. Her shoot with our Entrepreneur of the Year, Alison Schuback, a brain trauma survivor turned inventor, was no less emotional, O'Brien says. She was moved not only by Schuback's fortitude but also her family's unflagging unity (see Entrepreneur of the Year: What Alison Schuback Wants). "It's inspiring to see what Alison does every day to make herself better," says O'Brien. She divides her time between Brooklyn, New York, and Buenos Aires, Argentina, with her husband and 3-year-old daughter, Maya. Her work has appeared in Vanity Fair and Esquire.