Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Collaboration Station

Ushahidi Crowdsource Map
Yesterday I mentioned participation as a component of future maps. This is a theme that will come up often in this blog since this is where the web is headed.

People have always been subject to the rule of a few and even in that bastion of freedom, the US, the few are chosen by the majority. The minority have always gotten the short end of the stick until the advent of Web 2.0. Now the internet provides a voice for each individual and every group of like-minded folks. 

Of course every opportunity for influence brings out the "good" and the "bad" in our midst. In this conversation, however, I focus on what we can do to make things better, and specifically, what we can do with maps. As an example, here's another site where you can find a place to "fill up" your electric vehicle, courtesy of your local EVA. It's a nice way to help your fellow man, but what about when a lot of people are in need of help, as for instance during the Haiti Earthquake in January 2010. Well, there's a map for that.

By setting up a Ushahidi instance for Haiti, developers provided a way for relief workers to report where assistance was needed. At the same time, minions of geekland from around the world sifted through tweets and blogs for other reports of problems or aid needed and added them to the Ushahidi input page. Power to the People.

No comments:

Post a Comment