Creative studio TKOH is excited to announce the release of Totem, a free iPad application that helps people record meaningful stories with one another, and to have these recordings create a stunning visual artifact, or “digital heirloom” that can be preserved and shared.

Developed with support from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation’s News Challenge, Totem is an easy-to-use tool that makes recording memories and moments with loved one’s a wonderful experience.

Whether someone wants to record their eight-year old describing his day, or to create a complete biography of their eighty-eight year old grandmother, Totem helps them choose questions, record audio conversations, and add images and text to enhance their narratives. At the end of each project, Totem seamlessly transforms the recordings and images into a beautifully crafted video that paints a portrait of their loved one’s in their own voice, words, and photos.

Totem eliminates all of the hurdles that stand in the way of capturing the treasured memories of our analog lives in a digital form. Most importantly, the app is about creating an experience; it helps bring people of all ages closer together as they share stories from the epic to the everyday. The app creates videos that are high-quality, free, and non-proprietary, so users can archive and share the finished product with friends and family.

The current release’s Biography template aims to capture stories of one’s past, present, and significant relationships, with the option to add personalized questions throughout. TKOH is continuing to develop customizable templates for future release and is seeking partnerships with organizations who may be interested in using the tool to tell the stories of their community.

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