StoryTour- Business Matters - MSNewsNow.com - Jackson, MS

StoryTour- Business Matters

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A tech innovator in Fondren believes everybody has a story and he wants his app to be the platform in which those stories are told. After nearly a year of development "StoryTour" is getting ready for launch.

StoryTour Co-founder, Craig Kinsley grew up in Jackson and Madison, but his big idea came while living in San Francisco a few years ago.

"The booming tech community in Silicon Valley is a place that can drive you to dream a lot," Kinsley said.

Now back home, Kinsley's dream is this is an app for a tablet or smartphone which utilizes social media to create an interactive tour for a specific location.

"The goal is to really take any sort of geographical location in any city and create an audio mosaic of all stories around that area," Kinsley said.

Kinsley provided a few samples of content on a demo version of StoryTour.  The shared stories document why the restaurant Babalu in Fondren shows "I Love Lucy", and a guy sharing with app users where he met his wife 15 years ago.

Now, weeks away from hitting app stores everywhere it was not until Startup Weekend in Jackson last January that Kinsley's idea picked up momentum. In the event organized by Innovate Mississippi Kinsley's idea, then called AudiTour won first place.

Since then Kinsley has been working on StoryTour full-time.

"Gather all the stories that we can here in Mississippi, so we're working with the Ag Museum, we're doing a tour of downtown Jackson, doing a tour of historical Fondren," Kinsley said.

Put simply if you are at a landmark such as the Forestry and Agriculture Museum, go to the StoryTour app, click the marker on the map and a narrator will tell you all you wanted to know. Eventually users will be able to interact with the map leaving their mark.

"The goal moving forward would be to where any user can record a story upload and share with not only friends and family but the world," Kinsley said.

Kinsley is aiming for the full app to be available in January of 2014. In what he calls a "soft launch", a version focused on metro-Jackson will be in app stores in the next few weeks. @@@@

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