22 February 2013

Your Place in Line 30,346

You may be wondering why I am so excited about a new App that I am frequently checking my status in the waiting list. An app seems about as far from attics and old lace as you can get. To read between the lines and beyond the pages of the many manuscripts and photographs I explore, I frequently visit archives, libraries, historical societies and more. Though I'm more likely to be prowling in their basements than their attics.

So why Tempo? It's just another calendar app right? Well, yes and no. Tempo employs artificial intelligence to gather up the various bits of information you might need. On a recent trip to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit Library, I printed out maps and directions, looked for the closest (and cheapest) parking, explored lunch options and filled an Evernote notebook with key documents and summaries. Imagine an app that could do it all for you! 

Tempo uses artificial intelligence (AI) to pull together the things you might need for a meeting including contact information for other attendees. Artificial intelligence uses patterns to predict needs in an attempt to mirror human intelligence.

Much of my research is extremely varied so I doubt Tempo will be able to help with that. Pulling research information together is a fun and focusing activity. I'm more than happy to keep doing it.

But, the last thing I want to do before going to RootsTech is gather the standard information: airplane tickets, hotel reservations, conference registrations, local restaurant information, maps, etc. I'm hoping Tempo will help even if it simply reminds me that, yes, you do need that ticket to board the plane!

Tempo had so much demand for the free App that they created a waiting list. I'm guessing that it might take a bit of work to train the AI. With at least 30,000 in front of me, most of the bugs should be fixed by the time my number is up.