RHoK Global June 2012, the 6th Random Hacks of Kindness hackathon, came to a close this weekend, with technologists, designers, experts and activists coming together in 25 cities in 14 different countries to “hack for humanity.” Over 900 people participated worldwide, with the largest event in Nairobi, Kenya at 130 people.
During an intense 36 hours, these 900 hackers for humanity came together in 132 different teams to address 124 unique problems and they built 138 solutions. Many of the teams collaborated actively with teams in other cities working on similar challenges, and participants all around the world were constantly connected through a Ustream live video channel streaming video from RHoK cities across the globe around the clock, online IRC and Skype chats and the occasional multi-city video chat on Google+ hangout.
An incredible diversity of projects were tackled at RHoK Global, including those that comprised RHoK’s Featured Problem Set for this event. Some of the solutions built include:
Llegue a salvo/Arrived Safe (San Francisco): A tool that offers migrants a secure and anonymous way to let loved ones know they are safe, and to report hazards or abuses as they travel across Mexico to the US. Users can also observe all reported hazards and see them on a map enabling them to keep informed and stay safe as they travel.
Nepal Mobile Ultrasound (Toronto): Aiming to reduce maternal mortality in rural Nepal, this team built an android application that can manipulate and send images from a wireless handheld ultrasound via MMS for real time medical diagnosis.
Dynamic Election Results Viewing (Nairobi): A web application that lets users view election results dynamically on a GIS map as they stream in and generates reports that can be used to monitor election violence and tampering.
H20 Detective (Pretoria) - An android application that enables field agents to track, log, and visualize households based on their water usage patterns using geo-tracking and average consumption data from the local municipality.
FFilter (Trento and Washington DC) - These projects enabled searching of large data files of different types to flag private information like emails or social security numbers for removal before data is released.
Children’s Hospital Security (Austin) - A system to improve security at the Dell Children’s Hospital in Austin by allowing patients access to hospital areas at night while ensuring visitors cannot enter after hours.
Taarifa (Southampton): Taarifa is an ongoing RHoK project that allows the creation, visualization and sharing of stories/issues between citizens and the government bto reports and work through reports in their own terms using the tools they already have. Southampton hackers worked to develop a sensor visualization system for attaching to Taarifa reports.
Nike Sustainable Materials App (Washington DC and San Francisco): Development of a website and supplier database that will provide information to designers and consumers about the environmental footprint of the apparel they purchase.
Water Voices (Toronto): An ongoing RHoK project comprised of water education tools and a website that allows citizens to use mobile phones and social media to communicate water quality challenges to local media and political representatives.
PhillyEdu (Philadelphia): A web app that makes information about Philadelphia schools visually accessible to parents making school choices.
Text Book Image Classification (San Francisco): An algorithm that identifies mathematical formulas in text books and distinguishes them from other images, making the information more accessible for users with vision impairment or other print disabilities.
QuakeFelt (Trento): A smartphone app allowing users to earthquake shaking intensity and building damage information.
Rwanda Disaster Reporting (Kigali): A tool that allows Rwandans to crowd source reports of crisis events and distribute that information in real time.
We will be reporting and sharing videos and links to many more solutions as details continue to flow in from all the global RHoK events. Watch this space for more photos, videos and stories in the days and weeks to come. To learn about more of the great hacks built at RHoK and hear teams describing what they worked on, visit our collection of short videos for some amazing presentations and have a look at some of these pictures from RHoK all around the world. In the coming weeks we hope to see many of these hacks submitted to the RHoK Sustainability Project, where a few will be selected for mentorship and support in realizing their potential to make a difference.
RHoK Global happens twice every year, so mark your calendars now for December 1st and 2nd, 2012 to come out and hack for humanity again. If you would like to host RHoK in your home city in December, you can apply for the License to RHoK and make it happen. Join this incredible community of people around the world building open technology solutions for social good.