Monthly Archives: July 2012

Canada part 1

Yes that’s right, we’re in the part 2 city right now but we thought we would fill you in on part 1 first.

So we left New York and took a yellow cab to J.F.K. Everything was moving along smoothly, even customs. We got on the plane and to our surprise we had the front row seats witch means extra legroom. Well lucky us cause next thing we know it’s lightening and thunder around us and the plane was stuck on the runway for 2 hours – fun!

Well eventually the plane took of and we ended up “only” 45min late for our interview with Steve Mann. What a fascinating man. He taught us yet another term; Lifeglogging. According to him, lifelogging is when you keep some kind of journal while glogging (cyborg logging) is recording what you see with a camera or in Steve’s case: EyeTap. I got to do a little glogging my self when his students demonstrated one of their many projects in the Engineering Annex at University of Toronto


After getting a taste of future technology we met Sasha Chua and Alan Mayer who know each other from the Toronto QS-meet ups. They, like journalist John from New York, call themselves proud geeks. Sacha even got it on her business card. Later we had dinner with another member of their QS community, Nicholas Manolakos. He’s a broad range tracker and has been tracking everything from food, books, places he been and people he met. But he keeps his data to himself and for self use only. That’s why he won’t call himself a lifelogger since he believes a lifelogger shares the data. I didn’t ask him or Sacha and Alan if either of them glog though.

Do I count as a glogger when I’m Instagramming?

/Amanda P.s. Ville saw a spider today and can not be reached for comments during recovery.




New York delayed

…and it’s not only this blogpost I’m referring to.

So we heard about a QS-meet up in New York and thanks to @sgdean we got an invitation. So we grabbed our things and got on a train to New York.

I had visualized it like a group of people sitting in a ring, shearing stories after saying their name and declaring themselves as QS:ers.
- That was not the case.

There was speakers like Roger Craig (the guy used QS to win the whole thing) and demonstration rooms with new apps and great ideas.

We heard so many interesting stories about what people have done using quantified self/lifelogging and what it has given in return. One guy kept track on how many hugs he got per day, what a great thing to log!
Made many contacts as well and gwe actually booked several interviews for the next day.

First up was John Havens, Mashable journalist and a writer who also calls himself a proud geek. He spoke of what all the data, coming from QS and lifelogging, could do to improve society.

Unfortunately after our lunch I got sick so we had to cancel all the other interviews. I blame tofu.

We stayed at the nice Broadway Hotel n Hostel and on the way back to our room the guys at the reception stopped us to ask us about the camera.
Me, feeling like I could puke all over him at any second, smiled and started interviewing them on lifelogging.
They, as so many others, hadn’t heard about it but many of them were keeping track on their workout habits.
Think I’m on to something with the “unaware” lifelogger.


P.s Ville is having breakfast and can not be reached for comments








Boston Briefing

Better blog late then never…

So we went to Boston to meet with Jason Jacobs, CEO at Runkeeper. We were on a time limit but I believe we disposed those 30min pretty well.

What struck me was how big they are (Runkeeper, not the people of Boston) There’s apps within the app, communities and meet-ups. We also discussed how app developers and companies involved with QS/lifelogging instead of being competitive on the contrary cooperate. Witch is of benefit for both the users and themselves.
Great chat Jason!

Btw; if you have a bad day, you should come by the reception at Friend Street Hostel. (ask for Shaun) You will leave with a smile.

Before we left I wanted to get footage of typical Boston things but what is typical for Boston? See and judge for yourself.







London sum-up

London has been busy but rewarding.

Tuesday: Martin Blinder at TicTrac both gave us a tour on the website they’re launching and told us that lifelogging most definitely exist. In fact, one of the first known lifeloggers are Benjamin Franklin – we’re stunned!

Wednesday: We went to Southampton as advised and sat down with Dr. Geoff Merrett and Prof. Paul Lewis. They showed us their work with DejaView; a cam to help people with memory loss (and others who just forgets easily) to remember faces, places etc. Also got a great tip on Ash Smith, apparently a genuine lifelogger who we hope to Skype with soon.

The DejaView camera is based on the SenceCam. So Thursday we went to Cambridge to meet one of the SenceCam developers, Lyndsay Williams, but unfortunately out Internet connection has been terrible so when we got there we found that the meeting was canceled. Hope to see you some other time Lyndsay!

Friday: course was set on Oxford and Aiden Doherty, Marie Curie Research Fellow at Oxford University. We had a great talk about the human memory and behavior. Got lots of valuable info here.

Yesterday we went to explore London. At Piccadilly Circus we asked some Londoners about lifelogging, but not even the police had any answers for us. Could there be such thing as an unaware lifelogger?

Today we leave for Boston and Runkeeper.

Thanks London, it has been 5 valuable and perlite days!


P.s Ville agrees


London calling

So this time no morning drama…

Until we got of the customs. Security guards demanded that we deleted all the footage from the airport. This is the only thing left:











Hostels nice.











2nd out of 6 stairs

We went out for a little streetchat with the London-locals, met some nice people and saw some culture treasures.

But the highlight of the day was meeting Martin Blinder at Tric Trac. They just launched an awesome BETA-version of their site ( To explain it in one sentence; You get an overview of your life (habits, feelings etc.) through the information you log. We have during this past week found out more and more the term “lifelogging” but then Quantified Self popped up as a new piece to the puzzle. According to Martin, these two concepts are the same.

We’ve been advised to go visit two Professors in Southampton, who’s supposed to be experts on the subject.

Bye for now and log your sleep (I wont but I know some do)



P.s. Ville says God Night

From Berlin with love

Despite the rain, Berlin delivers.

After custom problems at the Berlin airport we arrived to the office of Archify and had a great talk about online habits, lifelogging and a (to us) new concept called “Quantified self”. Actually Hind mentioned that as well, maybe it’s something we should check out?

We’re staying at a Hostel called Check-!n Hostel here in Berlin. Really nice people here, both in the lobby and the other guest staying here (yes we share rooms with strangers and loving it). Just got a free sandwich each from the staff, think they like Ville.

Right now I’m sitting in the same room as 5 scrabble playing Englishmen who I also use as living dictionaries, perfection!

Oh, and by the way – according to the Lebanon custom service I am Lebanese. The customs officer assured me that my last name “Alam” is an old Lebanese family name and after a couple attempts to explain “Alm” is Swedish and also a type of tree, I just didn’t have the heart to refuse him this. So if the Lebanese customs ask; My name is Alam.


P.s Ville says Hi








Next up Berlin

Alarm was set on 2:30 this morning…

…but I was already awake. Everytime I tried to close my eyes I saw Instagram pictures.

We learned yesterday that Libaneese securityguards ain’t that fond of cameras. We were ordered to take it down several times and as a result the location of the interview with Hind Hobeika had to be changed. I didn’t mind though, her office was beautiful and it felt more personal. And because of the traffic, a car ride that usually takes 5 min took an hour so we had plenty of time for history lessons and drive-through-sightseen. They do have a special driving culture and I’m pretty sure a Swede wouldn’t handle it.

So now we’re on the Istanbul airport waiting to board the plane to Berlin. See you in the land of BootBeers!








3 Quick Questions to Niklas Laninge, COO at Hoa’s Tool Shop

“Time to make data meaningful”


Niklas Laninge is both a lecturer at Psykologifabriken and Chief Operating Officer at Hoa’s Tool Shop where they make apps for behavioural change. They’ve just recently launched a sleep app that they believe will be the start of logging data for a lot of people.

As a frequent user of the Nike Fuel band Niklas is a bit crazy about collecting data connected to health. Together with his team from Hoa’s Tool Shop he just recently arranged the first Health Hack Day ever, a 24 hour hackaton in Stockholm where all the participating teams built solutions for health improvement.

We decided to ask Niklas some quick questions about their new app and the future of life logging…

1. You’ve created a sleep logging app called Sömn Formeln (available on App Store in Swedish). What makes your app special?
This app is more about experimenting than simply gathering data. Our goal is to get more people to experiment with their life in order to find out what works for them. So Sömn Formeln is different because it’s based around experiments and that all the tips are written by licensed psychologists.

It is one of the few apps out there that actually encourage people to change how they behave. While most apps only gather data we want to put some meaning to this data. Sure it’s sort of a novelty app but honestly we’re quite tired of all the data apps who simply believe that data is all we need. It’s a fad, it’s time to make data meaningful.

2. In what way could logging something improve peoples everyday lives?
There are numerous studies that have shown the power of feedback. Gathering data is the easiest way to get instant feedback on your behaviours. Logging data is a great start to see how your behaviours and activities effect different parts of your life, like sleeping for instance.

A little, at least if you look at studies done on logging data. The problem is that if people don’t see the meaning with logging data they will grow bored and eventually drop out. Simply collecting data is fun and rewarding for a few people, for the rest of us we need something or someone who tells us what to do with the data.

3. What life logging tools would you like to see in the future?
I think Nike is on to something with their Fuel Band. Simple, easy to understand and works without me noticing a thing. Another thing I think will become huge is data gathering and story telling in combination. We have seen what a huge success Zombies, Run! was and now Swedish publishing house Bonnier is trying something similar with Teemo. So in short I would like to see tools that seamlessly gathers all types of data, help me set up concrete goals and that adds a storytelling filter on top of this.

Hectic first day!

Our world tour has begun!

It feels awesome to finally be out filming! But the day started of dramatic. With a canceled flight bus we grabbed the nearest cab to the airport. Well there we searched for a non-existing custom, boarded a plane and finally took of to Copenhagen.

We’re staying at a hostel and had a nice chat with our roommate Li, from China. She hadn’t heard about lifelogging but gave it a good guess. Later we met the guys at Evertale, who are creating an online photoservice which will launch soon. According to them, lifeloggers do exist but have an intetion behind the logging…

Mats on the other hand, who we interviewed last Friday, saw it as a part of a technical revolution while the Danes we’ve met on the streets seem totally clueless to lifelogging.

This is confusing. We’re gonna get some sleep now and tomorrow it’s of to Beirut. Maybe we’ll get wise in Lebanon.












//Amanda & Ville




Memoto Documentary on its’ way!

Finally! Our film team has hit the road (or, more correctly, the skies) for their 6 week long around-the-world trip. Their mission: to produce a full length documentary about lifelogging and quantified self.

They will be meeting with smart people from all sorts of areas within lifelogging: entrepreneurs, scientists, users and thoughtleaders. Hopefully, we will be able to collect the smart people’s smart thoughts into a film worth watching no matter if you’re a devoted self hacker or a complete n00b to whatever lifelogging and quantified self is all about. Our aim is to find out what lifelogging means to people today and what it will enable us to achive and experience in the future.

The film team, Amanda Alm and Ville Bloom, will tell all about it themselves here on the blog under the page Memoto Documentary. You can also follow their journey on Twitter: @amandaealm and @VilleEuren. Or follow their photostream on Instagram; Amanda is “alm021″ there.

And if you’re interested in taking part and sharing your ideas in front of the camera yourself, here’s the tour plan:

  • July 9-10: Copenhagen, Denmark
  • July 10-12: Beirut, Lebanon
  • July 12-14: Berlin, Germany
  • July 14-17: Stockholm, Sweden
  • July 17-22: London, England (with trips to Southampton, Oxford and Cambridge)
  • July 22-24: Boston, MA, USA
  • July 24-26: New York, NY, USA
  • July 26-27: Toronto, ON, Canada
  • July 27-30: Victoria, BC, Canada
  • July 30-31: Portland, OR, USA
  • July 31-August 5: San Francisco, CA, USA
  • August 5-6: Los Angeles, CA, USA
  • August 6-7: San Diego, CA, USA
  • August 8-10: New Taipei, Taiwan
  • August 10-15: Tokyo, Japan

Quite some trip, huh? Stay in touch and let us know what you think!

/Oskar, co-founder at Memoto and wanna-be-producer

Boarding slip for first stop on the trip - Copenhagen (photo: alm021 on Instagram)