Campfire

Physical books come to life with speakers & smart lights

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Kyle Kesterson
Kyle KestersonMaker@kylekesterson · Chief Freak, Freak'n Genius
The full product is made up of a few pieces, including the mobile app that contains a library of immersive, custom-created experiences that emit colorful showers of light, cinematic music scores and accompanying sound effects, that all work together to bring a mood and atmosphere around our favorite stories right into the kids room. And the other side is the web creation tool and publishing platform, which we created to quickly score the light and sound experiences around the books, instead of leaving all the artistic fun and flair to our devs. :) Frankly, it's my favorite part of what we've built, because we've stumbled onto pioneering an entirely new creative medium, and I can't wait to unleash for others to use. *How it works* Yes, it starts with an app📱, but you only need it to select the title of the physical book you'll be sitting down to read, then you set the app to the side and read aloud. To make this a screen-free experience, we use the latest and greatest in speech recognition, and a heavy dose of custom artistic, musical, and engineering magic. We just released an early v1 with the first 2 dozen titles, and are working to build the library quickly. Hopefully there's at least one in there you can start with! While you can experience a flicker of Campfire with just the app, what really unleashes the immersive magic, is pairing Campfire with a couple special light bulbs.💡 To do this, we just announced a partnership with LIFX, makers of the world's brightest color Wi-Fi enabled smart light bulbs, and St Jude Children's Research Hospital, who is leading the way to treat and defeat childhood cancer and other life threatening diseases. Such amazing work! That means for each LIFX bulb you bring into your home to experience Campfire, 10% will be donated to St. Jude, with a minimum of $50,000 to support their lifesaving mission. 💸 We're super excited to launch our partnerships with LIFX and St Jude's, because our philosophies and rigorous devotion to creating positive life experiences aligns perfectly. Is there even a better way to literally light up a child's life, than filling their world and imaginations with colorful stories? :)
Kyle Kesterson
Kyle KestersonMaker@kylekesterson · Chief Freak, Freak'n Genius
Many thanks @ryannegri! Hey all, I'm the founder and chief storyteller, working with a group of awesome artists and engineers, on this fun little experiment we call Campfire. 📚 Backstory behind Campfire A little over a year ago, I found myself buuurnt out from 6+ years of running a marathon of startup sprints and hitting a series of walls. So I took a step back, spent the next year driving and wandering around the US with my dog, camping, and meeting a wide variety of humans in parts of the US and Canada that are so far removed from my typical city bubble. Many stories were swapped and relationships formed, most nights under the stars and around a campfire. This is where it sparked for me. It was in those moments that I began to truly appreciate, that throughout the entire course of human history, we have come together around the campfire to hear stories that inspire and educate, teaching us about ourselves, each other, our world, where we come from, and where we can go in a future of possibilities. Consistently mesmerized as the warm crackling glow of fire light burns deep into the soul, bringing strangers and friends alike, closer together. May sound a bit woo woo, but it was profound and reinvigorating. It wasn't until I came back to Seattle and sat with one of my closest and most talented friends, David Wykes, where that spark started to take shape as we riffed and played "what if?" and "yes and...", then taking the concept to Startup Weekend in Seattle, where we built a prototype with Ryan Vanderpol. Shortly after that, met Bastiaan van der Weerd through the TechStars network to come on and help build the mobile app to its entirety. David is a father of a little girl named Robyn, and one of the most cherished times they consistently have as a family, is sitting around and reading their favorite children's stories. David will admit however that he encounters story fatigue and "stale books", having the read the same books over and over, as well as the pressures of having to be a great storyteller, really competing with other forms of media and entertainment. David has a strong desire to keep Robyn's love for stories burning bright, and as we take a look around and see the pervasiveness of screens demanding so much attention, see this growing battle, and something as simple as reading a book, is losing ground. Most of the innovations we see, as sexy and fun as they are, demand more and more screen time, which unleash a host of negative side effects. So our experiment was simple. Can we bring the special feeling of connecting through stories around the campfire, into our homes, keeping our kids (and our own!) love of reading alive, without needing to be glued to screens? The result is 🔥Campfire.
Kyle Kesterson
Kyle KestersonMaker@kylekesterson · Chief Freak, Freak'n Genius
In celebration of Product Hunt featuring Campfire today, I created an immersive KittyBot experience
Ryan J Negri
Ryan J NegriHunter@ryannegri · Co-Founder & CEO, Laicos Cloud
The Campfire app follows along as you read aloud, synced with smart lamps and bluetooth speakers to create a more immersive experience. You read real books while your phone sits on the table. You can see how it works here;
Niv Dror
Niv DrorHiring@nivo0o0 · VC at Shrug Capital
@ryannegri very cool, children's books get an upgrade!
Kyle Kesterson
Kyle KestersonMaker@kylekesterson · Chief Freak, Freak'n Genius
@ryannegri I see you found our very first prototype video! This was the first hint that we were onto something fun.
Niv Dror
Niv DrorHiring@nivo0o0 · VC at Shrug Capital
Campfire brings children's books to life with smart lights & speakers that sync to your reading 📖
Kyle Kesterson
Kyle KestersonMaker@kylekesterson · Chief Freak, Freak'n Genius
@nivo0o0 Awesome screen gif!