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Susan became really interested in everything related to personal information management. She was trying to figure out ways how she could do it herself, but she also experimented some of the newly available web-based services. She found exciting a service that enabled its users to plan for their funerals. She told Nick the next time they met. Nick just laughed and told her a story about his grandpa. When he was forty, he wrote down the contacts of all the people he wanted to have at his funeral. Everybody was joking about his funeral folder all the time. His grandpa maintained the list up-to-date for a long time. He passed away when he was eighty-two. All that Nick’s parents had to do was to pick up the folder and send the invitations to the people on the list.

Grieving and Memorial Services

Remembering and honoring the dead is a custom that exists in almost all the cultures. The digital age brought us new opportunities to remember. The range of grieving and memorial services is growing. We find services that provide us with space to reminisce about the deceased, scan for the deceased’s online belongings, create neat books from email communications and projects like digital heirloom and so on.

1000 memories is a free website founded in July 2010 that helps people commemorate the life of the loved ones by putting together everybody’s memories in the form of stories, pictures, video and audio. While this service is quite recent, it managed to raise already more than three million dollars in funds. Their objective is to create a permanent place where stories can be easily passed down on future generations in a respectful way. 1000 memories promises to never put any advertisement on the memorial pages. Creating a basic memorial page is a matter of minutes and it is very easy to invite other family members or friends to contribute and reminisce about the deceased individuals. The website provides a useful link for the bereaved with tips on how to deal with the deceased’s death.

The Digital heirlooms is a project which emerged from Microsoft Research in the UK. Objects as Digital Slide Box, The Backup Box and Timecard were developed to bridge the gap between physical and digital legacy, while also exploring the possibility of digital data fulfilling the role of life chronicles. They are based on the assumption that in many cases home is the best place for reminiscing about someone. The digital heirlooms are objects that gather a number of digital contents, either as a stream from an external source, or hand-curated by the deceased or the family. These objects enable to pass on and reminisce about personal memories that may otherwise get lost.

Memeoirs is a portuguese start-up that specializes in solutions for book email archiving. It is a good tool to create remembrance that can be shared with friends and family. Users log into their email account from the Memeoirs page and select contacts and time period to gather the emails. When the collecting of emails is completed, the users select a design style that will be applied to their book. Memeoirs dispatches the book within one business day.