Fabric: The app where Facebook Memories and Google Maps collide
Two former Facebook engineers, have created Fabric – an app that puts a modern twist on an idea that has been in society for thousands of years. A fresh face in a sea of social-media giants such as Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat and others, Fabric aims to be the “the story of your life that writes itself”.
The idea for the app sprung up after Arun Vijayvergiya, one of the co-founders, was given a printed book with friends’ memories of his dad when he was in college. As he explained to TechCrunch, ”When I leave this world, I want to leave with a story I can tell about myself – not for everyone, but the people who care about it”. Vijayvergiya then made his idea a reality, along with the help of Nikolay Valtchanov – another Facebook engineer.
What is Fabric?
As soon as you sign up, Fabric begins to construct the story of your life. It takes photos from Facebook, Instagram, and your phone’s camera roll, timestamps them and plots them on a map, showing where you’ve been – similar to the timeline in Google Maps. Along the side of the map, Fabric’s timeline gives you a visual indication of how many photos you’ve taken from year to year, and if you add your friends, the app goes one step further, sharing the photos to your meet-ups and keeping track of when you spend time together.
Swipe up, however, and Fabric dissects those memories into Days, People, Places and Cities. Click a city you’ve been to, and bright, circular icons tell you how many of your friends you’ve spent time with there, the number of places you’ve visited, the dates you were there, and gathers all the photos that are relevant. Think of it as an automatic scrapbook of every place, relationship and time that your social media accounts have ever recorded and you’re halfway there.
What’s the future for Fabric?
Fabric is available in the iTunes App store right now, but Arun and Nikolay seem adamant that this is only the beginning. They eventually want Fabric to be able to record anything the users want to remember and automatically access it when asked to. As well as that, they want to make the app capable of answering questions in a similar way to Siri, helping a user remember details that they’ve long since forgotten. The end goal? To transform Fabric into a complete “augmented memory solution”.
Fabric is a rare breed in that it may represent something genuinely new in the world of social media. Where other social media apps and sites are more focused on communication, Fabric is about memories and experiences; about remembering the people you’ve spent time with, and the times you’ve had together. Only time will tell whether Fabric’s story will be one we’ll all remember.