Thursday, April 12, 2012

Placeme: are you ready for auto journaling system?

Imagine this story.  It's 7pm.  It's your usual commute back home time.  You close your laptop, and pick up your smartphone.  Then your phone, touched by omniscience and gift of voice, starts speaking to you:

Phone: Jae, it may be better to leave in 15 minutes because of major backup on 101 North.

Me: Neat.  Thanks.

Phone: By the way, you may want to stop by dry cleaner on the way home.  It must be ready since you dropped them off last Monday.

Me: Ok.  Thanks for the reminder.

Phone: While we are on this subject, let me also tell you that there are cheaper place closer from your way home with better review.  You might want to try them and cut down your drive time.

Me: Hey... thanks but no thanks.  I think you know too much.

Conversation like this will happen.  Soon.  It's matter of time.  We are already fast approaching the time when our devices and sensors have access to more data about us than we can possibly imagine.

Check-in?  That's so 2010.
Just track me.
But are we ready?
All those data collection has been done mostly when you are online or using your credit card.  But increasingly with rapid rise of connected mobile devices, in a few years every one of us will carry a pocket computer with incredible number of sensors to collect unprecedented amount of data about us.  It's like we are leaving digital footprints wherever we go, and those digital footprints are automatically vacuumed by billions of mobile devices all the time.

Sounds like a science fiction.  But it's already starting to happen.  Placeme by Alohar Mobile is an example. Thanks to Google+, I was able to discover video interview taken by Robert Scoble just outside Blackbox yesterday.

Placeme is auto location journaling app (or auto tracking app, depending on how freaked out you are by the app).  It automatically tracks where you have been, how long you have spent time at where, what the temperature was, how bright ambient lighting was, what MAC address bluetooth devices were connected, and everything else that your smartphone allows Placeme to record.

By collecting all these data, Placeme will show you your history of where you have been.  Armed with historical data Placeme will be able to predict where you might be or what you are about to do even before you make your move.

Meet Alohar Mobile, maker of Placeme, founder Sam Liang.  First 15 minutes of video captures the essence of Placeme (if you are pressed for time, watch from 7 to 15 minutes):

I'm really curious how soon people will be ready for this.  As any start-up people will know, you can make the coolest technology.  But if market is not ready, then you have to pivot to apply the technology for different use.

So question is... are we ready?

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