We think that people really are going to count ridiculous things and that’s part of the appeal.

Counting random things is something practiced since the dawn of time. Cavemen would sit and count the number of berries in their gruel, or how many club smashes it took to kill that night’s dinner. Knights in medieval times would calculate how many goblets of wine they could pound, or the amount of fair maidens spotted each day. It’s fair to say, counting is not a new practice.

On the flip side, social media is a very new practice. Cavemen and knights alike didn’t have the benefit of throwing 140-word zingers on Twitter, or trying to impress all their Facebook friends with pictures of babies and talks of fad diets. Social media has gotten so popular that we don’t even care what we’re doing, we just want people to know about it.

Mixing these two elements, counting and social media, is where the app Tallio comes in. Designed for the Apple Watch by three entrepreneurs — Scott Paul, Brandon Elwood, and Brad Bacigalupi — Tallio is always one click away.

“The idea with the Apple Watch is you don’t want to pull your phone out, you want to do something real quick,” Bacigalupi said. “With Tallio, you can choose anything you want to count and click it. If I’m in high school and want to track how many times my teacher said, “Um”, or how many times something silly happened. If I’m a more serious person and want to count how many laps around a track, how many pushups I did that day, I can create that and quickly count on my watch. We’re calling that picoblogging, meaning you can count and share things really quickly.”

Whenever you can start creating words, you know you’re on a good path. Tallio is brand-new (just hit the App Store yesterday) and offers a world of possibilities. Even the makers aren’t fully sure where it will head.

“Right now, it’s really early and we’re interested to see what happens with it,” Bacigalupi said. We think this is more than just counting, we think it’s kind of a social platform. What sets us apart, ours is the first social counting app. A lot of them are orphan apps, so they’ll count stuff on your local watch. On ours, it’s all connected socially, you can see what everyone else is counting.”

Let’s say you’re watching another epic Utes-Cougars football battle. In the same way Twitter offers a way to connect with other users and voice your opinion, Tallio does so, but in counting form. How many times do the announcers mention Bronco Mendenhall’s priority list (1. Faith 2. Family 3. Knowledge 4. Jello 5. Chocolate Milk 6. Football)? Create a folder and start counting. How many times do you hear the words spirit, honor, or tradition? Create, click, and share.

“It’s kind of like Twitter but even faster, because it’s just a tap,” Bacigalupi said. “Click on trending, and these are things that people in the world are counting. I can see the categories in the world that are popular…from a big data standpoint, we think there’s going to be a lot of value in seeing regionally what people are counting.”

Between the process of counting and the act of sharing, the possibilities for Tallio’s application are virtually unlimited. If you own an Apple Watch, give it a download and see where the counting takes you.

“We think that people really are going to count ridiculous things and that’s part of the appeal,” Bacigalupi said.

Published 4/30/2015