on this day

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on this day is a feature on some silos and indieweb sites which show posts published on the current (typically Gregorian) day of the year in previous years; commons sites tend to show more general historical events that occurred on that same day.

Contents

IndieWeb Examples

Eddie Hinkle

Eddie Hinkle added "This Day" to his site on 2017-03-22. It checks if the month and day of the post match the current month and day without matching the year. If that is the case, it adds a "Flashback card" to the top of the homepage.

Jonathan LaCour

Jonathan LaCour added "Over the years..." support to his site on 2017-04-20

... add yours ...

...

Commons Examples

Wikipedia

Wikipedia has a "On this day…" feature on its homepage:


Silo Examples

Facebook

Facebook provides a notification that:

You have memories with Person1, Person2, and Person3 to look back on today.

IMG 8796.PNG

If you choose to share that post, it will post a "memory" X years ago to the audience chosen.

  • FB X Years Ago.png

If you click on the notification or go to the "On This Day" section of the mobile app, it shows clusters of posts that same day, sparse by year:

  • on this day.png

You can access the "On This Day" section of the mobile app by tapping on the "Menu" button in the lower right hand of the tab bar, then scrolling down in the "Explore" section until you find the "On This Day" item.

With contents like:

  • friendiversary
    • "You became friends on Facebook with 3 people" clustered header
    • Person (icon, profile linked name, jobtitle at org, [Message] button)
  • posts you published that day
    • looks like entire post is shown, rather than just a summary / excerpt / link-preview

Google Photos

Google Photos makes a little collage of images that links to a set of photos, and notifies you.

Example:

  • google-onthisday.jpg


The mobile app also has a feature intermixed within their other stream-like features (albums, movies, animations, assistant, stylized photos) called "Rediscover this Day" in which they present a few photos from a particular calendar day (usually within a week of the current date X years ago). They also provide a link to an album of all the other photos taken from that particular day. One may have multiple cards in their stream covering various days X, Y, Z, ... years ago to cover different years in the past.

Example:

  • rediscover this day.png

Swarm

Swarm just (2017-04-07?) started showing "year ago" notifications:

2017-096-swarm-year-ago.png2017-097-swarm-inbox-year-ago.png

Which takes you to viewing a checkin with a photo from a year ago, with no other special UI or banner of number of years 2017-097-swarm-year-ago-checkins.png
except for a wide button at the bottom:

Show more check-ins from that day >

Activating that button takes you to a check-in history search result for your checkins for that day, reverse chronologically ordered:

2017-097-swarm-year-ago-checkins-list.png

Services

Timehop

Main article: Timehop

Timehop is a service that subscribes to your silo accounts, aggregates your time-based posts, and shows them to you in future years on the same month/day of the year.

Issues

Negative reminders

"On this day" can notify you of a personally negative event from a year (or more) ago, thus causing you to potentially re-experience the emotional context surrounding it, which may result in an unpleasant experience.

Reminders of subsequent loss

"On this day", especially many years later, could also show you positive content that has obvious context, some of which you may have lost since then. E.g.

  • from a past relationship
  • with people or pets who have passed away
  • from a place or home you had to leave
  • ... etc.

Such reminders, especially with images (photos), can provoke or remind you of an unhealthy sense of craving or yearning for something you have lost, even things you thought you had let go of and moved on from.

Brainstorming

Temporal window or barrier

Possible global mitigations for negative reminders or periods of time:

  • temporal window (only show past N years of posts on this day)
  • or a temporal barrier (only show posts "on this day" back to YYYY-MM-DD and no earlier)

Muting or forgetting

To mitigate potential issues of negative reminders or reminders of subsequent loss, content shown in an "on this day" aggregation could have a few options:

  • ( Mute ) - hide this item like you might hide sensitive content by default (but still have a way to reveal / show more. Or mute for some number of years.
  • ( Forget ) - drop this post from any future "on this day" aggregations. Human memory forgets, perhaps this is a feature we need to build into artificial memory systems like "on this day".

Ordinal Day

Tantek Çelik if I implement this (which I’m considering for Falcon), I will implement it with ordinal day of the year instead of Gregorian day, which will trade February 29th only happening once every four(ish) years with day 366 only happening every four(ish) years.

Summary

"On this day last year, you wrote X posts from Y different locations"

Highlighting a Post

If you have made multiple posts on this day in previous years, perhaps just one could be highlighted.

  • The most replied-to post
  • The most retweeted post
  • The most liked post

See Also

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