Updated 1 day 6 hours ago
In the rural villages of Tanzania, like the small village where I live, cell phone service is not even close to reliable. We (the villagers and I) have to walk around to parts of the village to try to get even one bar of service. It seems (I'm not quite certain yet) that the weather affects service as well, so there are many times when there is no service to be found whatsoever. If we could find a way to construct a low-tech, low-cost antennae to either plug in or be near to increase signal strength, our village would be able to connect to other villages without simply traveling to them. This would save time (no need to travel as much) as well as money (cost of continuous attempts at calls that get cut off or have very poor quality).
Updated 2 days 42 min ago
The need: South Africa is home to the largest epidemics of HIV and TB in the world. Nearly 60% of TB patients are concurrently infected with HIV. Additionally, chronic diseases such as hypertension and diabetes are slowly becoming an increasing problem. These health issues are exacerbated by extreme wealth inequality and high rates of unemployment. In rural areas of South Africa the health system is strained by an increasing demand for services and a lack of resources and human capital. Clinics and hospitals are often prone to stock outs of essential medicines. Many patients report that treatment default and non-compliance are largely due to unreliable supplies of medication. Treatment non-compliance also poses additional health problems such as increasing rates of multi drug resistant TB (MDR-TB) and extreme drug resistant TB (XDR-TB). Households that are financially stressed will opt to utilize monetary resources to provide for their families rather than risking the cost of time and transportation on unsuccessful trips to local health facilities. Providing patients with information about the availability of required medications at their local clinic can potentially improve treatment adherence, overall patient health, and efficiency within local healthcare facilities. Home-based care (HBC) organizations also work closely with most rural clinics to provide care and support to patients in their communities. Including and utilizing HBC organizations as key stakeholders in the dissemination of this information would be incredibly beneficial.
Basic App Functions: Notifications of new deliveries and stock outs of essential medicines at public clinics and hospitals. Potential for two way communication as well so that patients can send notifications about their locality as well as the type and quantity of medication they require.
Suggested Platforms: SMS, possibility for web-based (though access in many rural areas is low). To achieve the desired impact, the platform chosen should be accessible for the majority of mobile phone users.
Impact: Providing patients with information about the availability essential medicines can potentially improve patient treatment compliance, alleviate household financial stressors, allow for better continuity of care at the home based care level, and may improve clinic and hospital communication with the community.
Updated 2 days 5 hours ago
Often individuals discover valuable and useful information in their daily lives about areas they have ventured and visited. However, this information they attain remains unshared and therefore highly unused, which unfortunately means that others must discover that information for themselves. If there was a convenient way for someone who discovered something about a particular location (i.e., unsafe area, where a rare foodstuff can be found) to tag that location on a mobile application with that new information, a wealth of knowledge could be gathered and kept in one place that is accessible to everyone with that application. This would ultimately lead to a better-informed public who can access easy discovery through a growing and actively running database. Therefore, an app to inform people of valuable information, ranging from food and deals to safety and crime when they arrive close to that specific location, would greatly increase the convenience of information that could be useful to anyone anywhere. The way this application would work is described below. Steps: 1. “Check-in” using GPS to the location 2. Comment on the location 3. Publish the comment as a warning or recommendation 4. When someone walks close to the location of the published comment, the application will automatically display the comment as a warning or recommendation. As a Peace Corps Volunteer I often feel out of the loop when I visit new towns, and am usually unsure of where to avoid or where to go to find unique things that could greatly improve the quality of my life. This would also save villagers’ time and effort looking for unique things in unfamiliar towns, therefore making their arduous and expensive journeys into town more worthwhile. Additionally, small business could use this app as a free and cheap way to advertise to anyone who visits the area. It is a convenient and quick way to advertise to the people who really concern small business. I hope the following YouTube video will explain how this solution will work, and the impact of the application. http://youtu.be/CxW7h5flN-O
Updated 2 days 7 hours ago
Mujeres: Cambia, a micro-enterprise based in rural Ecuador seeks a solution to support our growing social venture. Mujeres: Cambia provides opportunities for low-income women through the sale of products made from recycled materials. Our products are eco-friendly and help to support specific goals that each member has articulated for herself.
Please visit: http://www.mujerescambia.com for more details and watch our video about this challenge at:
We would like to interact with 2 Google Doc worksheets: one accounting ledger and one inventory list using SMS cellphones. Most people who live in our area do not use smart phones or have regular access to the internet. However, most do have access to and are comfortable using SMS texts to communicate.
Our goal is to have group leaders maintain the documents in cyber cafés as needed but also to have our members interact more regularly with the databases via SMS.
Updated 2 days 8 hours ago
Whatsapp (www.whatsapp.com) has become an enormous success in developing nations, especially where data usage is cheaper than making phone calls or sending an SMS. Access to communication is one of the largest challenges to development that people around the world encounter as they try to mobilize and schedule meetings. If a meeting is scheduled but later changed or canceled, the original participants don't know because the organizers lacked funds to notify everyone. When this happens everyone loses precious time and becomes frustrated.
A feature-lite calendaring software that could operate on a similar basis to Whatsapp could go a long way for assisting groups seeking to organize and meet. This software could contain just a few meeting-oriented functions such as: create a meeting with time and place, send invites, change meeting info and notify participants of the change. This software additionally would also allow participants to update their personal attendance.
Updated 3 days 4 hours ago
Smart Giving is a platform where individuals, charities and businesses will interact and support each other. We are aiming to develop a web App which will allow people to give any thing they like e.g. time, skills or money and get rewarded for social giving. We are gamifying the concept of giving and making it fun. Our members will earn Joys (points) for whatever they give, which can be converted into cash back discounts offered by our business members. Its simple, we are part of nature and it has a simple rule, more we give the more we get.
All public donations will be transferred to member charities. We have established a charitable fund called Smart Giving Trust, which is Deductible Gift Recipient (DGR) endorsed by tax office and holds fundraising licenses to collect public donations throughout Australia. At this stage, we need help to build a very basic application to get some feedback. We have uploaded a presentation which help you understand our long term vision for a global platform. http://bit.ly/14610Ed
Updated 3 days 6 hours ago
Many within developing countries are perfectly capable of running a successful microenterprise, but lack the insight or the experience needed to identify an opportunity and take the necessary steps to start a business. This tool would allow a user to select from a number of business templates appropriate for his/her area and skill set. The system would then send them instructions for each step that needs to be taken to acquire funding, licenses, tools and necessary knowledge, and continue to send them regular alerts to help them manage their growing business. The user can enter purchase and sale details and the system can manage their budget and inventory, sending them an alert to notify them when they need to resupply. The user can be connected with other businesses within the system that supply the materials they need or consume the goods they produce. The system could also use location-aware load-balancing to geographically disperse those who are selling the same product. This would work best as a smartphone/web app to allow for fast entry of progress and sales data, but it would be quite feasible for the end user to receive alerts and basic instructions over text messaging. This system would allow many to lift themselves out of poverty through microenterprise, and it would help NGOs to easily deploy microenterprise franchises and actively monitor those franchises.
Updated 3 days 15 hours ago
Until recently, all RHoK participating cities have been encouraged to use the RHoK.org global website, rather than build their own local websites. However, each city is now being encouraged to build a local website that promotes local RHoK initiatives, events etc.
We have started work on an interim website, (www.rhokmelbourne.org) but we would like to build something really fantastic and engaging that integrates well with the global site, while still showcasing all the fantastic work that's being done by the local RHoK Melbourne hackers. Here are our thoughts so far on what could be incorporated into the RHoK Melbourne Website.
- What RHoK? (Global and local context)
- Problems we 're working on (ongoing problems and new problems for upcoming events)
- Get involved. This section should included information for hackers, subject matter experts, and non-techie "hackers"
- Upcoming RHoK and RHoK n Roll Events (maybe it can be linked to Meetup so we just update one and the other does it automatically?). There would need to be info about date and location (ideally with a map)
- Contact us
- rhok global
- Link problems to RHoK.org, with automatic updates if there are any changes on the global RHoK website.
- Solutions that have been posted on the RHoK Melbourne website (also linked to RHoK.org). Is there are really good way of showcasing the solutions on the RHoK Melbourne site?
- Volunteer for RHoK Melbourne - information on how the community can get involved (including RHoK interns)
- More detail in the "Get Involved" section (i.e., specific info for people from a legal background/community development/climate change etc)
- Donate or sponsor RHoK Melbourne
- Other Cities Participating - linked to RHoK.org and maybe on a map
Past events - What has the RHoK Melbourne community been working on thus far? THis could include a summary, some photos, and could perhaps tie in with the problems and solutions pages.
Hacker and problem owner profiles - It would be optional whether people wanted to create their own profiles, but the idea would be to share skills and interests ahead of the event. Meetup is capable of doing this, so it could just be a content page on the website encouraging people to share that kind of stuff on Meetup.
RHoK blog - perhaps this could be tied to the Melbourne page on the RHoK global website.
Resources - this wouldn't even need to be a public page, but just a simple content page to point people at during the event. It could include things like tips and suggestions for certain tools that people can use (things like Git, Basecamp, Pivotal Tracker, Redmine etc).
Updated 3 days 22 hours ago
Make No Mistake - bushfire survival planning is the responsibility of individuals, including young people and it can be a bit boring!
In areas of high bushfire risk there are many households without a bushfire survival plan. If there is a plan it is often made by the the adults for the enitre household. Young people, especially teenagers do not always understand the risk and may not pay close attention to the plan (if there is one).
Many households plan to just leave early. Great. What happens when it is the third day of Code Red fire danger in a row. The pressure is on to go to work but the local high school is closed. What's the plan for the teenagers? What happens when a fire starts in the area and there is no option to leave?
We need to inspire these young people to understand bushfire risk so that they can get involved in bushfire planning.
Our young people are typically avid internet and social media users. We need to develop a way of engaging with young people online in the high risk bushfire areas to get them bushfire prepared and potentially save their lives.
With the help of RHoK we would now like to increase the level of knowledge of bushfire risk and preparedness amongst our teenagers. "Make No Mistake" will be a game (web-based and/or mobile) that is fun, educational and interesting enough that teenagers will play it!
Some of the issues to be addressed are:
- teenagers being left home alone on high bushfire risk days (school holidays, sick, pupil free days)
- teenagers from out of the area coming into a high risk area to attend school
- teenagers from high risk areas who attend schools out of the area (knowing when it is safe to come home)
- understanding information available (eg. fire danger ratings, weather conditions, warnings & incidents)
- how to survive if confronted by a bushfire event
- letting people know where they are on days of high bushfire risk.
The key features required are that it is a GAME, it is FUN, there are THINGS TO DO and QUESTIONS to answer.
Updated 3 days 23 hours ago
In any emergency response, such as firefighting, there is a need to manage resources and optimise their utilisation. Responders, vehicles, aircraft all play a part, and it is important for team leaders and managers to know where everyting is located and the task it is currently assigned to do. Often, in a fire fighting scenario, teams are spread out over many kilometres, and also be obscured by smoke. Operational managers in the response management headquarters also require a "big picture" view to properly use the resources at their disposal.