Maps from mobiles to alert multitudes
September 7th, 2008

Learn in the information linked here about new technology applications that are being moved into place to mitigate human crises. Mobile local information gathering and digital mapping are collaborating. A post at iRevolution titled Flood Warning, Mobile Phones and Dynamic Mapping of India describes the goals and methods being tried in the Monsoon Project:

In Mumbai and Ahmedabad, we will see what kind of qualitative data people have reported. The next step is to to expand the data collection exercise to discreet objective data points that may expedite rescue and response in real-time. Can farmers sitting atop roofs in the flooded villages of Orissa use their cell phones to transmit simple, discreet, data points that would help plot a real-time map of events as they unfold? Can such a platform be created? How far are we in terms of technology and collaboration? At HHI, the Crisis Mapping Project is well underway, with small projects at multiple locations in different stages of development. . . .

The Conflict Early Warning and Crisis Mapping projects at the Harvard Humanitarian Initiative is supporting these smart mob era endeavors that are essentially brand new opportunities of the 21st century:

HHI is currently engaged in a multi-disciplinary research project sponsored by Humanity United that seeks to advance crisis mapping and early warning efforts worldwide by:

– Identifying lessons learned and best practices in the field of crisis mapping and early warning;
– Assessing viable community-based conflict early warning and response strategies;
– Analyzing innovations in and increasing uses of information communication technology (ICT);
– Outlining future trends, gaps, and opportunities for collaboration among organizations.

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