Our digital life has evolved from a few files and emails at a small number of places to something too complex for us to handle! The problems listed here motivated us to create our Digital Manager app Knit – a universal aggregator.
So what makes our digital life so complex?
- We have too much digital content. We’ve long since moved from having a few thousand files and emails to hundreds of thousands of content items! Digital photos are so easy to take, we often take hundreds of them in a month. Same with emails, text messages etc.
- Spread across too many storage locations. We used to have too many local storage locations – hard drives, USB/thumb drives, network drives, phones, CDs/DVDs, cameras. . . Now, we also have too many remote storage locations – email accounts, cloud/photo storage accounts, social media accounts, web based calendars, text messaging account. . . Old infrequently used accounts stay around like zombies – the problem only gets worse over time, not better.
- In too many formats. We have to deal with not just local files but also cloud files, emails, text messages, appointments, contacts, social media posts/comments and notes. These are often stored at vendor servers in vendor-proprietary format – we are at their mercy for continued access to our valuable content.
- This has brought us an app sprawl. Each email, calendar and cloud storage vendor wants us to use their own special-purpose apps to access content stored there. The same vendor’s app looks different between phones/tablets and PCs. Even non-app website interfaces vary across different vendors. Keeping up with the non-stop “improvements” takes a mental toll.
- Finding something when you need it has become too painful. A 5 year old photo or document could be on your current computer, an old computer’s backup, as an attachment in some email, your phone or in a cloud photo/file storage account. Where do you start searching? Can you even search your phone, Google Photos account, email attachments or text messaging account? What you cannot easily find is as bad as something you didn’t back up at all!
- Its very-very difficult to make sure we don’t lose valuable content. How do you back up a valuable email, contact, appointment or text message? Can you easily save (or migrate) content from an old account while still keeping it discoverable rather than being forgotten inside an obscure ZIP file? How do you reconcile the benefits of cloud backups with its cost, performance and safety concerns? We often just give up.
- Digital organization has gotten much harder. You cannot create a folder-like hierarchy to organize text messages, contacts or appointments. There’s no way to tag them either. In which folder do you store a file or email that belongs to more than one category? How do we organize content that belongs together (e.g. financial info) but is stored in different locations (e.g. hard drives, email accounts. . .)?
- Nothing gives us a holistic view of our personal digital content. Financial aggregators give us a holistic picture of different types of assets at different banks and brokerage accounts. We don’t have anything comparable for our files, emails, contacts, social media posts etc. It is impossible to get high-level insights or spot patterns that become visible only when we aggregate different content types from different storage locations.
Our digital manager app Knit simplifies your digital life by addressing many of these problems. It supports not just files, but also emails, contacts, appointments, text messages etc. Knit supports local hard drives, USB/network drives and phones but also web based email, calendar and cloud storage accounts. It lets you not just find your content, but also organize it, back it up and use it on a day-to-day basis. Best of all, it does this without compromising on privacy and security. Merging together most day-to-day digital interactions within one easy app is what truly simplifies your digital life.