Update: After a month of use, Carla costs $9 per year.
Have you ever wished you had a special person in your life whose sole purpose was to make sure you never forget anything? Call the plumber. Take your meds. Buy salt. Email your friend a happy birthday wish…. Just a friendly nudge.
Meet Carla, your personal assistant for remembering. She’s dependable, patient and friendly, and you’ll probably agree that she’s easier to get along with than Apple’s Siri or some complicated calendar app. For one thing, she doesn’t need you to have a smartphone. And she doesn’t ask you to download an app. In fact, she likes simple, fast text messages.
How to Use Carla
You can sign up for virtual assistant Carla online, or simply by texting 213-465-7640. Once you’ve done that, Carla will prompt you with a few steps on how to get started remind. Setup takes less then a minute, and after that, Carla’s all yours.
You can set up weekly or daily reminders. Just text “leave for doctor appt 1:30pm Tuesday” or “call M 2pm” and she’ll text you at the appointed time with a simple reminder. Or text “take pill daily 8am,” and you’ll get a friendly reminder every morning. The interface is so easy that you can type out reminders while you’re half asleep.
Another nice feature: Carla can help you track longterm goals. Let’s say you want to track how long you walk everyday. Carla will ask you how far you walked and gather your responses to give you a weekly summary. Talk about a great way to stay on track (no Fitbit required).
You can also use Carla to remind your friends of things. Simply text “contact” and Carla will pull your contact lists and text your friends any reminder you have. That means no more excuses for forgotten IOUs.
Carla or Carl
Carla is the wave of the future — she’s gender-fluid; Carla is also Carl.
“We are sensitive to the issue of gender,” Carla’s co-founder says. “If you try signing up via the website, you’ll notice we actually offer a Carl option for assistant name — so you can make your assistant male too, if you prefer.”
Carla is a new tool, and you can expect new features to be added as she develops. We’re pretty sure she’ll text you to let you know.
This is the first in a series of occasional articles about simple tech solutions for life’s challenges. Be on the lookout for more cool tools we just discovered — and send your picks our way.