PetaPixel

Introducing Bokeh, a Mobile Lifeblogging App for Saving and Sharing Moments

bokeh1

If you’re a longtime reader of this blog, you may have noticed that our news editor DL Cade has been running the show as of late. Here’s the reason: for the past 3-4 months, I’ve been hard at work building a new website and service — one that we’re finally revealing to the world today.

It’s called Bokeh, and is a mobile lifeblogging service that lets you save and share all of life’s little moments through an easy-to-use app and easy-to-browse website.

bokehlogo

If you’ve ever tried maintaining a daily blog of your life, you may have found — as I did — that it can be quite a hassle. It takes time to sit down, transfer/process/upload photos, write some text, and then publish. If you want to do this on a daily basis, it can quickly burn you out.

Social networking services such as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram make it very easy to post text and photos, but those services are geared toward broadcasting. What if you don’t want every little moment to show up in someone else’s news feed?

Private journaling apps and services make it easy to remember the days of your life, but generally they’re completely private — there’s no way for family and friends to drop by and follow along with your life.

Bokeh fits in between those two types of services. It’s as easy to use as Facebook/Twitter/Instagram for documenting your life, but it’s designed to be more for remembering than broadcasting. Sign up, and you’ll have your own Bokeh blog found at yourusername.bokeh.com.

You can find my personal bokeh at michael.bokeh.com (sorry, my life is pretty quiet and ordinary compared to some people I know).

As you can see, the website is organized by date, allowing you to quickly jump into any date in the past to revisit it. There’s a month view that offers an at-a-glance look at things you did that month:

monthview

Go up a level to the year view, and you see 365 days of your life on each page:

yearview

You create moments live on the app using your phone, and they’re automatically synced to your Bokeh blog. We designed the app to be extremely streamlined in its posting process. To create a new text or photo moment, just tap the pencil or camera button at the bottom, write some text and/or snap a photo, and then save it.

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You control how public or private your Bokeh blog is. By default, blogs are public — anyone with your URL can stop by and browse through your moments. If you want to make it a private service, simply go into your settings in the app and add a password for your website (this is different from your account password).

password

Keep this password to yourself to make Bokeh a private journaling service, or give out this password to family and friends to allow them to follow along.

Bokeh is 100% free and unlimited. You can save as many moments as you want to document your days, and we’ll never charge you a cent!

If you want to get started, head on over to Bokeh.com, or download the app directly from the iTunes App Store (an Android version is in development). It’s open registration for now, but we’re planning to put up a waitlist in two weeks.


 
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  • http://www.russellheimlich.com/blog kingkool68

    I dig it. Bummed I can’t sign up yet.

  • derp

    Very cool app! One question: is there any way to upload photos that were taken previously (either with the iPhone or another camera)? It seems like the photo button just opens the camera.

  • http://www.petapixel.com Michael Zhang

    Do you use an Android phone?

  • http://www.russellheimlich.com/blog kingkool68

    Yes. I have a Nexus 5 Android phone.

  • Christopher Miller

    No sign-ups for Android until the app drops?

  • Qian

    THIS!

  • http://www.petapixel.com Michael Zhang

    There isn’t at the moment, because there’s a strong association between timestamp and creation. e.g. The timestamp shows what you were experiencing when it was created.

    It’s something we’re thinking about though. Thanks :)

  • http://www.petapixel.com Michael Zhang

    Ah sorry guys :( We’ll try to release the Android version as soon as we can!

  • Jesse Cablek

    Agreed, however we’re going to lose the possibility to reserve a good username because it’s iOS only. Thought there would be a sign up on the web site but apparently it’s mobile-only?

  • Jimmy

    Michael, love this. Any plans for allowing short video clips uploads?

  • http://www.petapixel.com Michael Zhang

    Good point. We’ll think about opening up a mailinglist/reservation system. Thanks

  • Willi Kampmann

    Sounds like a public Narrative/Memoto thingy without the cool hardware. For private life blogs Narrative seems to be the much more comfortable, automagic and complete service – albeit at a high price. Do you guys plan any integration with Narrative? For example so that one can easily export photos from their Narrative photo collection to their public “bokeh” blog? (btw the name sounds totally random to me.) FYI, Narrative is the lifeblogging camera that you can clip anywhere and that will automatically capture geotagged photos in intervals of 30 seconds.

    Also, this statement is making me rather uneasy: “Bokeh is 100% free and unlimited. You can save as many moments as you want to document your days, and we’ll never charge you a cent!”

    Nothing in life is free. Will the service be ad-supported? I don’t see any ads in the screenshots. If not, I see only two options how this will work: 1) you’re gonna sell my data to finance your data servers. 2) You’re gonna go down sooner than you can say “Everpix”. I strongly prefer paid services, because they have a business modell that I understand and know to work.

  • Rick Bennett

    I’ll add to this request. My “moments” will generally start with a camera app, edited, tweaked, and saved to the camera roll. Only then do I think about posting. Otherwise, I’m digging it.

  • unknownid

    Will there be a way to export/save all of your entries in the future?

  • http://www.petapixel.com Michael Zhang

    It’s something that’s on the roadmap. :)

  • http://www.petapixel.com Michael Zhang

    Not at the moment, but we’d be open to seeing how our platform can partner with that type of hardware. The thing is, Bokeh is meant to be much more curated by you rather than an endless stream of moments that you might or might not want to remember.

  • http://www.petapixel.com Michael Zhang

    Maybe. Haha.

    If so those plans are secret for now. ;-)

  • http://www.petapixel.com Michael Zhang

    We’ll likely introduce this feature in an upcoming update. Thanks for the feedback Rick!

  • http://www.petapixel.com Michael Zhang
  • Vlad Dusil

    Congrats Michael on the launch. Killer domain, too!

  • Natalie

    Have never had a blog yay

  • Maay

    It works ! fantastic work Michael. Thanks very much. Gave you five stars on the app store !

    Suggestion : I find the button “save original photo to Camera rolls” unnecessary. I’d rather see instead a button to go and fetch photos in the camera roll of the iphone. I haven’t found a way to insert photos from the camera roll yet.

  • http://www.petapixel.com Michael Zhang

    Yeah, we’ll be introducing a way to add camera roll photos in a near-future update :) Thanks for the feedback and the rating!!!

  • http://www.mkshft.ca/ Mark Shannon

    I agree. I use a variety of services, but all of them lack any kind of cohesive place to store all the memories. Also, sometimes I don’t have time to find an app, open it, find the photo button and take the photo… I take quite a few photos from my iPhone’s lock screen.

    I’ve downloaded Bokeh and explored a bit, but giving Bokeh the ability to upload photos from the camera roll would make me more likely to use the app. I can capture the experience quickly as it happens, and then later in the day, take the time to upload and create a story around it in the Bokeh app.

  • http://www.petapixel.com Michael Zhang

    Coming soon! :)

  • Matt Rickman

    Very cool. Nice design!

  • Camp Murphy

    Why doesn’t the app let me upload a photo stored on my phone? Forcing me to use the built-in camera is rather limiting.

  • http://www.mkshft.ca/ Mark Shannon

    Awesome! Thanks for the reply Michael, and congrats on the new app :)

  • Leigh Diprose

    Will video be coming at some stage?

  • iamjohnwhite

    The only thing that I disliked was not really being able to go to other peoples blogs or search around. Very much limited to just me myself and i.

  • russianbox

    Looks nice! I’m always up for finding new ways to capture places!

    I’ve signed up! I can see this being a nice photo blog for things. I might make an account for Picnicin’ too!

  • http://www.petapixel.com Michael Zhang

    That’s coming in a soon-to-arrive update :)

  • http://www.petapixel.com Michael Zhang

    It’s on the roadmap, yes :)

  • http://www.petapixel.com Michael Zhang

    Yeah, right now the app is limited to creating content for your own blog. We’ll be adding on browsing features a little later on.

  • http://arttrap.com Louis Trapani

    If it is 100% free, that’s cool, but what is the monetization model? Will ads be coming? Or will it be marketed to be sold to a Google or Facebook or alike? In-app purchases? Will there be a way to save our content that we post (words and images) to the site back down to our computers?

  • russianbox

    I love how the camera buttons are better/easier to use than the built in camera (IOS 6.2)

  • 100pre

    I can’t sign up, i have and iphone 4, maybe too old for this app

  • http://www.petapixel.com Michael Zhang

    What kind of error are you encountering? We’ve tested the app on an iPhone 4, so it should be perfectly fine.

  • 100pre

    “signup failed. there was a problem with your registration. please try again.”
    I tried again, again and uninstalled, reinstalled, what else can i do?
    I tried again, and it works but it takes me 1 hour

  • http://www.petapixel.com Michael Zhang
  • haaaal

    hey, if we have an ios user name, can we use it with our android when you have the android app

  • Luis

    I have a nexus 5 and i’m also waiting for this amazing thing! Im the kind of guy who likes to save notes of daily things like the great good i had, the great place i went, etc. And i want a private thing with a way to be shared and this looks like it!