By Xiling Gu
“You really die two times, the first is your physical death, the second is where no one talks about you any longer.” Disruptive Technologists talks with Ken Huening, founder and CEO of MiLegacy, a website, and app designed to curate one’s lifelong memories and stories to be passed on generations among loved ones. He first encountered the idea of the memory curating app when he strived to preserve the stories of his ailing father-in-law, a man with rich life and decorated war hero.
Ken was challenged mostly about the necessity of yet another digital cabinet to stack away numerous photos and posts given the abundant options already out there. “The biggest challenge is to get people to accept a new type of Social Media. We wanted something to have longevity and was cherished by the users and their family.”
Ken said MiLegacy serves entirely distinct purposes from other social media tools, “Facebook or Twitter or Snapchat, they are more instantaneous communication, not unlike what TV does when you do channel surfing. Often you don’t get the control of what you see and hear.”
The company is onto something here — imagine 30 years from now, your grandchild decides to know more about you by browsing your Facebook and Twitter accounts. And what do they get from the 2000 posts? A mix of food photos, political jokes and celebrity memes.
MiLegacy gives users control of curating the milestones of content that are relevant and meaningful. Users can render various timelines by keyword and compose a story you want to know about grandpa, like “travel to Argentina” or “hobbies”. Ken said MiLegacy provides another alternative in the social media toolkit, much like pulling out a tool from a garden shed that is better tuned to your task—forming a person’s lifelong story.
“Our demographic of audiences is typically 30 something, they have kids, or they have elderly parents — they want to preserve stories for the kids, and they want to preserve stories for their elderly parents for their own children to have.
With special features named “Time Capsule”, you can create a post not just of today, but place it on the actual date when the event happened. Same goes with sending a timed future post, or private message to your granddaughter’s 30th birthday, like “Things you gotta watch out for when you are 30.”
Another heartening feature of MiLegacy is that it doesn’t only help you sort your memories, it also helps you erase them. If you happen to have someone you are no longer connected with and never want to be associated with, you can easily sort related posts and photos in a group and delete with one single click. Hurray for the innovative and considerate thinking! If only neuroscientists could do the same with the brain!
Ken was formerly an electrical engineer who worked in the field of semi-conductors and did well enough to self-fund his own business idea two years ago. With the upcoming debut of iOS app of MiLegacy by the end of July 2018, Ken sets a goal of hitting one million users within less than six months to attract sizable investment.