Like, what an Öura ring is
A journeyman electrician by trade, Kevin Hart fell into air quality monitoring while working at a hazardous waste site.
Unsure of what he was being exposed to when his employer gave him a respirator, Hart saw an opportunity to develop a product that could not only detect pollution both indoors and outdoors but actually improve air quality.
The experience led to Hart co-founding Vancouver-based healthy-home builder Tzoa in 2013.
Fast forward a few years, and Tzoa's flagship product, Haven, can now be retrofitted to any home, empowering individuals to protect themselves and their families by monitoring and controlling their indoor air quality, not only detecting pollutants in real time but actively improving indoor air quality by upwards of 90 percent.
We took some time to get to know the Port Coquitlam native.
What's your favourite spot in B.C.?
My favourite spot in B.C., especially during the summer, was Green Lake Provincial Park, up near 100 mile house. My family used to go every year and it was an important part of my childhood with lots of great memories.
Where did you go on your last vacation?
I wouldn’t call it a vacation but recently I went to Las Vegas. I did a very unusual trip, more focused on the culture. I stopped at the Mob Museum and the Neon Museum which both tell the story of how the city got its start and how it reimagines itself every decade. There are tons of interesting, colourful stories.
Did you know that the Strip is actually not in Las Vegas but an unincorporated town called Paradise, originally formed to help hotels and casinos evade taxes?
What is your most memorable podcast, film or book?
My favourite podcast is called Invisibilia by NPR. It explores the invisible forces that shape who we are as humans, such as societal norms that most people accept as reality. It also digs into how our biology influences how we behave. Basically, it forces you to rethink a lot of assumptions.
I’m a fan of the Keefer Bar in Chinatown with its eclectic atmosphere. Definitely try the cocktails and check out the artists who play on weeknights.
What is your morning routine?
The first thing I do is check my sleep data from the Öura ring. If I had seven hours of good-quality sleep, I start my day; if not I grab a coffee. Next, I do lots of stretching and foam rolling followed by a light jog and sprint intervals while listening to the Snacks Daily podcast, amongst others.
What is your favourite quote?
There is a very simple line in the book Growth Mindset by Carol Dweck that really resonated with me. Paraphrased, it said something like “you have two options, you can succeed, or you can learn.” I like the notion that failure is just an opportunity to learn. That is what life is all about. And hopefully, you write it all down somewhere.
Best advice ever received?
The best advice I have received is to have the mindset that no one knows what they are doing. Life, at least in North America, allows us to choose our own adventure and there are infinite paths we can choose. No one has been down your path before. This implies that there is actually no such thing as great advice, just different perspectives.
Are you a night owl or an early bird?
For productivity, I’m definitely a night owl, but I feel much better when I’m in bed by 11 p.m. and get eight hours of sleep.
Favourite outdoor activity?
I grew up playing soccer.
Favourite Vancouver neighbourhood?
I’m split between Olympic Village/Mount Pleasant and East Van. Both have above-average character, tech companies, restaurants, bars and entertainment.