Memoto: A Wearable Camera That Gives You a Photographic Memory

One of the big ideas that seems destined to explode over the next decade is lifelogging, the ability to automatically capture and store one’s life and experiences for future reference. Memoto is a new camera that’s trying to be a pioneer in this emerging market. Its name and tagline should give you a good sense of what it does: “Memoto Lifelogging Camera: A tiny, automatic camera and app that gives you a searchable and shareable photographic memory.”

How’s that for an elevator pitch? Basically, the app allows you to document nearly every waking moment of your life through photographs — well, one in every thirty waking moments — and then relive those moments anytime you’d like.

It’s similar to the Autographer, another lifelogging camera we wrote about just last month. Both are small cameras that you can clip to your clothing (though, Memoto does claim to be the world’s smallest) and both automatically snap photos throughout the day.

Both also use a special app to organize, archive, and share your photographs.

The difference between the two cameras lies in how the photos are snapped. Unlike the Autographer, which snaps photos intelligently based on 5 sensors, Memoto snaps a single 5-megapixel photograph every 30 seconds as long as it’s clipped to you. Only when you put it down or into your pocket does it stop.

It features a minimalist camera body that’s entirely devoid of controls. You simply clip it to your outfit and leave it to “paparazzi” your life from your point of view throughout the day.

The two photos snapped every minute contain both location and orientation data. A built-in GPS records where it was shot, while a built-in accelerometer makes sure that all your photos are upright regardless of how the camera is being worn.

The batteries inside the 1.4×1.4x.35-inch camera last two days on a single charge, and are recharged by plugging the camera into your computer — which conveniently also backs up your memories to Memoto servers. Two days is also how long the camera can snap away for before you need to clear the onboard storage space (this is about 4000 photos).

Since 4GB of automatically-snapped photos per day would amount to around 1.5 terabytes per year, the company behind Memoto is also offering a subscription-based storage service (encrypted, of course). Pay a regular fee, and you’ll be able to store an unlimited number of life moments in the cloud. These moments can then be accessed anytime and anywhere using the iPhone/Android app or a browser.

Memoto launched a Kickstarter fundraising campaign this morning in order to bring the product to market. In less than 24 hours, they’ve nearly reached $200,000 — four times more than the $50,000 they were planning to raise. For a contribution of $199, $249, or $279 — there’s a limited number available at each tier — you’ll be able to preorder a Memoto camera and receive it when it starts shipping early next year.

  • Philip Han

    I’ve been wanting a lifelogging camera for the longest time.

  • 9inchnail

    “which conveniently also backs up your memories to Memoto servers”

    Yeah, real convenient… for the government to track my every step. Ooooh, it’s encrypted. I’m sure, the feds don’t have access…

    Seriously, you don’t have to be paranoid to see that this is just another way of giving up your privacy. You can’t even control it. Next step will be 3G so that the camera can upload every photo directly to the servers without you having any means to select the photos that are uploaded.

    But hey, if you wanna actually pay to be watched and tracked all the time, go ahead.

  • Dave Wilson

    Are you completely stupid? Can’t control it? How about, DON’T FREAKING BUY ONE if you’re so stupidly paranoid? You friggen nut jobs drive me mental. Now shut the hell up and go do whatever it is you’re so scared of people finding out you’re doing.

  • Big A

    This is perfect.

  • Dezza

    Oh my goodness… Like Dave says- if you don’t want one don’t buy one? They’re not mandatory! And really- is your life that interesting that the Feds are going to be sitting there intent on following your every move? I’m sure they’ve got better things to do.

  • Michael Zhang

    Sorry Dave, we edited your comment to tone it down a bit (er… a whole lot)

  • Simon Bolz

    If only Hänsel and Gretel had one of these…

  • mammaries

    Unfortunately, the life moments that I do wanna log are moments where I am not wearing anything that the Memeto can be clipped on… or anything at all ):

  • Bermellotheke

    A bit Black Mirror oriented gadget. Hate this things

  • Gerrit Wessendorf

    I would love one, but this is really bad indeed. Don’t like the idea all the images are uploaded to their server. I hope someone will find a way around this if they don’t offer an alternative.

  • junyo

    The point is the Fed DON’T have to sit there monitoring every move. This is data, and with enough computing power you can chew through a lot of data automagically. Google’s already said that with their level of technology they could start finding and tagging faces from all the Streetview data they collect run against social media profiles. Random people on the street, that aren’t voluntarily participating. So if I were the government, meaning I’ve effectively got an unlimited budget, this looks very much like the bones of a data collection sensor mesh. With sensors that travel into homes, businesses, classrooms, bedrooms. Places I could never get official permission to put a data collection device, taken in, without needing probable cause, by someone paying for the privilege. I don’t really care if everyone’s not carrying one, or if you specifically aren’t, as long as enough people are carrying one, enough of your friends/classmates/workmates, that I’m getting captures of the daily activities, home interiors, and associates of a decent percentage of the population. This that a bong in the background of that image? Image analysis says it is. Let just bubble that up to the police and see what they think, just in case. Hmmm, you keep appearing in places along with people my program identifies as foreign nationals from suspect countries – lets just flag your file for personal attention shall we? I sure it’s all perfectly innocent, we’ll clear this right up after looking at your financials and those of your family – just to be thorough. If you’re not doing anything, you have nothing to hide, amiright?

  • Philip Han

    Live in fear.
    Live in fear.
    Live in fear.
    Live in fear.
    Live in fear.
    Live in fear.
    Live in fear.
    Live in fear.

    No seriously though, life would be awful if you didn’t live in fear.

  • junyo

    Yes, because no government ever spied on it’s people. Or argued in court for the right to detain them indefinitely without trial . Or blew them up with drones based on secret evidence.

    Oh wait, all of those things happened. This year. In America.

    Just because you don’t fear something doesn’t make it go away. I’m sure life is a lot easier if you’re too stupid to be concerned about anything. If you want, feel free to jam an ice pick in your ear and wiggle it around until you achieve perfect lobotomized, retarded bliss. Bury your head in the sand and cover your ears, and go back to sleep.

  • Gary C

    The guy from Memeno would have found this useful, if he remembered how to use it.

  • Mandy

    Heyyyyy here’s an idea.. don’t break laws and wear this camera? I think people are smart enough to take this off and leave it at home when they’re cat burgling.

  • Ovaries


  • inajeep

    Neat idea. Reminds me of gargoyles from Snow Crash (Neal Stephenson).

    Don’t want one, don’t get one but what about those around you who do have one?

    Privacy issues

  • inajeep

    Or a GPS.

  • mike stanley

    This is good so you can prove you did not cause the traffic accident or park at a time indicated by a bogus parking ticket. Should take a picture every 5 seconds and only save when you decide to.


    And the paranoid freaks come alive! LOL! Don’t buy one if you don’t like it. Wait… what’s that? The voices in your head says otherwise?


    Going to help fund this because it’s damn cool and to piss the crazies off!

  • Ameer Gittens

    It will quickly fatigue even the hardiest of the self-involved, trivializing life’s memories instead of “immortalizing” them. I doubt many people will be able to keep this up long enough to form a viable business model. That said, I’d be willing to give it a try.

  • Realitycheck

    yeah totally. I knew the government wanted to spy on my adventure hikes with the family, and of course the government wants to know all about my top secret jogging route. I mean, why wouldn’t big brother want to observe my ultimate Frisbee techniques! Let me guess, you don’t have any phones do you? Because then government could listen in on your long distance phone calls to your aunt in Mukilteo about tax reform and finalize their plans for your demise! Muahaha

    but seriously your over reacting.

  • Victor Quezada Carrasco

    I really like the idea, I have a horrible memory and this surely wil be cool, I’m just not so sure about the placement of the camera, wearing in it on the neck? The photos won’t look very good I bet… I’m a permanet glass wearer, how about a model of glasses that have the camera incorporated to them? That way, the photo will alway be of what I’m looking at, kinda of Google Glass, but a lot less intrusive…

    Cool project!!

  • Philip Han

    Nobody understands sarcasm and dark humor anymore.

  • 9inchnail

    That’s kind of my point, dude.

  • 9inchnail

    Exactly the point.
    Imagine this: Some dude at a bank stands in line behind you wearing one of these. You start a little chit chat and get recorded. That same dude turns out to be a bank robber checking out the place he’s gonna rob the next day. Now what happens if the feds check his account to find possible accomplices and see photos of you standing in line with him having a chat? It’s just photos, not video, they don’t know what you’re talking about, you might have been there with him to plan your move. Next thing you know, the FBI kicks in your door.

    Or some dude explodes a bomb somewhere. With no surveillance camera available, the feds will check every photo feed of people that were in the area at that time to find the potential bomber which always means that innocent people will be checked and tapped.

    Just random scenarios but the point is, that just by not buying and wearing one yourself, doesn’t mean, it can’t be used to spy on you. Face recognition software can be used and every user of this thing will be an involuntary spy for the government.

  • ericnl

    it is too late to be concerned about privacy issues, unless you live on a mountain with no technology.
    you can use a firewall to stop the automatic upload of the photos to the Memoto servers, and just keep the photos on your own computer.

    this definitely is not a thing to wear daily, but I can see a cool use for it on holidays: too many people these days are not enjoying what they are doing because they are too busy recording it on their different photographic devices.
    at least this one will take automatic photos, so you don’t have to stop and get your camera out.

    when imported on your computer you can then just convert them into a stop-motion video of that day, recording your holiday in a new way.
    will it look as good as the photos you would have taken with your DSLR? absolutely not, but it will help you enjoy your trip more.

  • fast eddie

    This is a great product for people suffering from memory loss issues like amnesia and Alzheimer’s.

  • Brian

    How about if everybody gets one, and then overloads all of the servers with their banal lives? Like all of those cell phone pictures of people’s food. After all, the most pictures are going to be from your workplace. Oh, you’re typing again. Oh, you’re typing again. Oh, you’re sitting in a meeting. Oh, you’re typing again. You went home. You ate. You’re sleeping. You’re going to work. Oh, you’re typing again. Oh, you’re typing again. Oh, you’re typing again. A near-infinity of dreary monotony, recorded for posterity. Or is that posterior? Only time will tell. Or the next power outage.

  • Alan Wood


  • metaocracy

    a measure of a concious society can be found in its documentation.
    or how else are we to learn from society and our mistakes ?

  • eraserhead12

    wouldn’t really help with alzheimer’s–it’s not like you’re just literally losing your memories, you lose every function possible, even the ability to swallow. if you can’t remember who your children are, a thousand pictures won’t do any good

    also, it might traumatize/shock/trigger depression in people with amnesia if you inundate them with all these photos of things/events they don’t even recognize but supposedly took place in. if you have short-term memory loss, it wouldn’t do you a world of good either.

  • Design Disaster

    Junyo, governments don’t have unlimited budgets, not even the almighty USA. Or haven’t you been paying attention to the economy? The potential for this product to infringe on people’s privacy borders on revolting, but the level of hysteria that accompany your comments do nothing to further the discussion.