Our concept of a place is tied directly to experience: what we did there, what we said, who we met allows us to navigate just as much as latitude and longitude. There are a million tools that are built on this fact — Foursquare check-ins can drive up return rates for that very reason — but I have a new favorite.
Hi calls itself a narrative mapping tool. Obviously, I’m always up for anything that involves writing, but it’s a little more sophisticated than that. You can add a few words about any location, along with an image if you so desire.
You can probably guess what a lot of the content looks like: plenty of scrumptious food and majestic scenery, with the occasional questions of “How do I use this?” But there are occasional bits of surprise: a moment that stands out through sheer color, a quote that puts a museum exhibit in perfect context, a captured idea from a technical talk… there is an interesting potential here that is a little more thoughtful than the typical social media update.
Currently, Hi is wait-listing people who want to join and then onboarding them in batches. But even if you’re still waiting for an invite, you can explore other people’s posts — I prefer just clicking around on the map interface and seeing what I find.
Craig Mod is part of the team behind Hi. His projects never fail to fascinate me. Mod has written an essay about the logic behind Hi. It’s not required reading for using the platform, but it’s got some interesting ideas on narrative, starting new platforms and creativity in general.