Written by IainB

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Tuesday, 4 October 2011

image for Can't remember who you've greeted today? There's an app for that
Be careful using this app in large groups

Office workers who work at a large corporation, or even minglers at a party will be overjoyed at the latest offering from MyWay Software, iContact.

This latest applelet utilises the camera in the iPhone and facial recognition software to work out if you have previously met that person that day, alerting the user through haptics.

"You pop the iPhone in your shirt or jacket pocket," said Mac Buck, editor of App World!. "When you meet somebody for the first time that day, it gives a short vibration. If you've already met them, it gives a longer buzz."

Users quickly learn to distinguish between the different buzzes.

"We did a trial in the eMag offices," said Buck. "There's fifty different magazines produced here, with hundreds of staff. Knowing who you've already said good morning too is quite useful. And it worked. It was utterly, utterly brilliant."

Version 2 of the applelet, due out early next year, will expand on the facilities of iContact.

"We've had plenty of feedback in the first few months of use," said CEO of MyWay software, May Wye. "We're going to incorporate as many of the suggestions as we can into our next version."

Some of the mouthwatering new features will include voice recognition, so that the app knows if you said good morning too the person you met, and will vibrate with a different pattern if you encounter somebody subsequently and did not previously say good morning, or did greet them. Repeated encounters without any greeting will produce a different pattern so as to avoid the embarrassment of greeting a person on the fifth encounter. A further feature will keep track of who you have met and allow you to tag the person into a category and even send a friend request via Facebook. The final new feature will detect if the person you met responded to your greeting.

Women have complained that they have no breast pocket in which to pop the iPhone, but as women are generally better at remembering social niceties, there has not been a big uptake from the female gender anyway, so this will not be addressed in future releases.

"One thing we have to be careful of," said Wye, "is overuse of the vibrate function. One elderly chap walked into a room full of people in his nursing home, and the phone vibrated so much, it interfered with his pacemaker. Fortunately, he's recovering in hospital, because he was running the iHeartU app that called the paramedics."

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The story above is a satire or parody. It is entirely fictitious.

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