Artifact Technologies has raised an additional $500,000 in angel financing, money that the Seattle area startup will use to create mobile applications that utilize location information in new ways. Total funding now stands at $2 million.
“We see location as more than just data points,” said CEO Sam Teplitsky. “Our goal is to create ‘place identity,’ where locations themselves come alive with dynamic content opportunities around entertainment, information, education and commerce.”
The startup has already experimented in that arena. It has unveiled two mobile apps: the casual game Ghost Patrol, which we previously wrote about here, and Fonograf, a curated local music event discovery service.
“In near-future versions, we are adding geo-specific content that will enhance the basic mobile experience by leveraging stories indigenous to the Seattle area,” says Teplitsky. “We are treating our hometown as an incubator to define and refine our geo-tech based on user interactions and feedback.”
In the case of Fonograf, the app will allow users to create “virtual artifacts” that tell the story of the music scene in Seattle. Each one will be connected to a place where the story occurred — which reminds me a bit of Pelago’s mobile app Whrrl (acquired last year by Groupon).
“Conversations can rise up around these artifacts,” said Teplitsky, a former mobile consultant at Cheezberger. “Connections to contemporary bands and venues will naturally occur, creating a digital mosaic of the Seattle music scene, past, present and future. As we expand fonograf into other cities — Portland, Vancouver, San Francisco, Los Angeles, etc. — the stories and inter-connections will take on even greater resonance and relevance.”
Teplitsky has similar ambitions for Ghost Patrol, the company’s ghost-hunting game in which he said they’ll attempt to draw on Seattle’s lore in order to hunt for ghosts across several famous locations in the city.
“The idea is to test out a mobile gaming experience that rewards mobility but does not require it,” he says.