The funeral industry is notably slow on the technology uptake but there are a few interesting funeral-related apps. Find those ashes you scattered long ago, talk to ghosts and tweet to your friends after you are dead…
Resting Here – This app seems to do two things. One is it allows you to create a video tribute for your loved one that can be linked to a QR code. You can then, say, put the QR code on the prayer cards at the funeral, so attendees can use their Smartphones to be led directly to a video of the deceased. The other thing the app does is keep track of where you buried your loved one, or the spot in which you scattered their ashes. The company’s website states: “The use of the RestingHere.com smart phone app is invaluable to those that chose a cremation option where ashes may have been spread in a non-traditional cemetery.”
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LivesOn – This app allows you to keep tweeting after death. How? Why of course, by “using intricate knowledge of your online character to create a virtual continuation of your personality after you die.” Sounds frightening. The service will apparently analyze your main Twitter feed, carefully selecting appropriate subjects, likes, and articles that would have been likely to interest you, then posting them on behalf of your friends for you to read. From RT.com: “A similar application was recently seen in a UK television program named Black Mirror, which showed a bereaved woman speaking to a virtually-constructed version of her deceased husband, which was built from his previous online communications, despite him not having laid any plans to maintain social media communications after his death.”
If I Die – This app posts a predetermined final message to your Facebook wall after you die. Basically, you choose three “trustees” who are charged with verifying your death. “Users can then record videos or craft any number of Facebook posts to be published posthumously,” reads a Facebook page about the app. “When your trustees confirm your death, your messages can be published all at once to your Facebook wall or released on a designated schedule.” The app’s creator got the idea after some married friends nearly got in a fatal car wreck while on vacation in Italy. What would happen to the kids if something happened to us, the couple mused. Their intention was to create a website where they could record a secret message to be sent to their kids in the event that they died.
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Spirit Story Box – Using an iPhone this app picks up changes in random electrical noise and associates these sounds with words from a pre-programmed vocabulary considered to be the language of ghosts. When the app hits on a string of noise that sounds like a pre-programmed ghost word the iPhone will then say it out loud as a spoken word. The idea behind the app is based on EVP, or the electronic voice phenomenon. You have seen this in any number of ghost movies, including this summer’s excellent ghost flick, The Conjuring. Investigators ask questions while using a voice recorder. Ghosts, which supposedly can manipulate energy to create sound that can be detected by electronic equipment, will answer. When the ghost hunters play back the recordings they hear the ghostly responses they weren’t able to detect by ear alone. It is these ghost voices that the app is recording, allowing you to literally talk to ghosts. “My only question,” one person posted in an online forum. “Will the NSA record those calls too?”
Escape: The Coffin – This app is a game. You’re stuck in a coffin in a spooky old inn in the middle of the forest. “At midnight, they say you can hear the sound of nails being hammered…What’s more, kidnappings have been happening often in the adjacent town, none of which have been solved.” Your mission, to escape!