The project has also received a £380,000 Innovate UK grant from the Technology Strategy Board.
The Firef.ly team are partnering with the Department of Computing at Goldsmiths to create a mobile app that combines the best of trip planning, travel guide expertise, journal writing and social media.
Designed for the smartphone-enabled traveller, Firef.ly uses a traveller’s GPS trail to ‘stitch together’ the most important elements of a journey, creating a digital map that documents all elements of the user’s journey.
An e-commerce component will then offer the user one-of-a-kind, physical mementos from their journey.
Firef.ly founder Chad Cribbins and his team will be working with Dr Mick Grierson and a team of researchers from the Department of Computing to develop artificial intelligence systems for the app, allowing Firef.ly to match user profiles with potential places of interest on their intended journey.
The Computing group will also research the development of smartphone technology that prevents GPS from rapidly reducing a phone’s battery life by being more intelligent about when it is and is not used.
Lastly, they will be working on data mining software- allowing information from Firef.ly to be fed back to international tourism and travel companies so they can better understand their markets.
“Firef.ly started out as a bunch of sketches drawn on a napkin in Moscow,” explains Chad Cribbins.
“It’s a response to the fragmentation of apps commonly used by travellers – photos on Instagram, social media on Facebook and Twitter, personal blogs for travelogues, journaling on Path. Firef.ly will elegantly capture the entire travel journey.”