Culture often jumps through the holes technology opens. In 2010, Apple released the iPhone 4, its first phone with a front-facing camera, unleashing a billion selfies, and a cottage industry of apps to support them. In early 2011, William Wilkinson released Everyday, an app made to document a selfie a day and create a stop-motion video timeline with the results. "I didn't have much faith in it," said Wilkinson. "I thought it was a really niche thing."
He was wrong.
Everyday proved a hit for Wilkinson. It was a top 25 iOS App Store app, and today has some 200,000 active users. And over time, those users began to find new and creative ways to do things with it that Wilkinson never intended. Wilkinson had built it as a way to help people take consistent selfies which they could compile into a movie. But people just used that as a conceptual jumping-off point.
"I designed it for one use and realized people were using it to take pictures of their babies, their kids, multiple projects," said Wilkinson. "They wanted to take a picture of other people, or their house, it could be anything."
Wilkinson is rolling out a second version of the app today. This version has several features meant to make it more flexible. With a $2 in-app purchase it supports multiple timelines — so you could set up separate timelines for yourself and your cat (or dog) now. You can also have the reminders go off at random times, or at fixed locations — so you could do something like take a picture every time you go to Costco. It also supports Dropbox archiving. And yes, you can still use it to take selfie series too.
Brendan Klinkenberg is a tech reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in San Francisco.
Contact Brendan Klinkenberg at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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