“What is your Lifestream thing all about?” A common question I get when I am checking in or uploading a photo. On a warm Saturday afternoon, I walked by a vaguely familiar restaurant and wondered if I had been there before. And if I have, did I like it? Who was I there with? How many times have I been there? Just then, I realized that I didn’t have an easy way to find that out. My brainchild was that if I could easily checkpoint points in my life as they happened; where I am, pictures of what I am doing, who I was with, what I was thinking, I could then use that information for all sorts of things. The geek term is called lifestreaming. This data collection happens all the time by companies like Google so I decided to create me own “Big Data” system to collect data about me for me. With this information, I am able to ask Audrey questions like:
- “When did I hang with Matt last?” (Candy Store, 401 days ago) or
- “Did I like the movie Looper?” (Imaginative, smart, and well done, 5 stars)
- “How many times have I been to Humble Pie for pizza last year?” (5 times, last time was 189 days ago)
I am working to create a app for my phone so that Audrey could act like Siri for my personal data, asking questions in natural language gets me immediate answers. More to come about that.
But it takes discipline to record things as you go (stopping mid pizza slice to check-in or holding off that bourbon until movie review is done). In reality, my Lifestream has some care and feeding more than Audrey can do for me. For normal non-geeks, most people can do this with Facebook or Google+ (status updates, photo galleries, checkins, tag people you are with) and just need to friend the five people you want to share with (or friend 100 people but only share with 5). Facebook and Google+ both now allow you to export your data so you can move to another service later. Maybe the next best thing to start lifelogging. Now back to my James Bond Marathon Month.