|Version 4 (modified by 8 years ago) ( diff ),|
Human Map :: The living breathing first hand experience of world events.
The Missing Piece
With very little cooperation from existing infrastructure we stand on the verge of comfortably accessing an "input stream" comprised of each individual's needs wherever disaster occurs. Such a system should cost nothing to the end user because it actually saves significant sums in wasted effort and wrong guesses. Early warning alone could mean regime change, or halting epidemics.
A citizen with featurephone should be able to have a contact within minutes of catastrophic event and a buzz as each new tower comes back online, to capture as many weak signals and potential survivors as possible. The signaling of new towers will reassure each individual that systems are returning. Individuals should be able to initiate a Need whenever it comes up. It can be done for another party or along with. Each Need must have a location however. This is achieved by dead reckoning until GPS capable phones arrive into that scenario. A basic featurephone UI will allow users to make certain data added by voice. Location for instance. These messages may need to be transcribed but crowdsourcing may be a solution. Especially for disaster situations. A local self identified literate population could receive these randomly and transcribe within moments.
Region Level Shortcodes can be negotiated and should be part of any provider's operating agreements, but the intended operation of this system is accomplished through system wide broadcasts of short questions and responses. For survival level conversations there is a very brief set of actions required. Sending requests and being updated about the progress of an request seems like the most useful mechanism in low resource situations. This kind of conversation doesn't need to be synchronous or 'live' in the sense of a voice connection, but certainly live enough when the system is providing progress updates steadily. As a system and carrier agnostic communications channel, it would be a data 'side channel' open to any formatted data in that bandwidth, opening up the ecosystem of devices that can interact. This system would require a strictly adhered to hierarchy of message priority with sensors being lowest priority, but growingly pervasive.
Audio messages can relay as data. Keeping a voice connection is very resource 'expensive'. By sending packets of data instead of streams, they can find their way around network outages reducing overhead and enabling packets to take best route. This is an advantage in unreliable systems. It enhances encryption and anonymity options.
The data and all reporting is owned by the sender. This is a citizen owned system "From Bezos to Bozo's". Permission to track, edit, delete or escalate at will is owned by the Sender. This is exactly opposite the typical direction of information. The feedback mechanisms and display ought to show every communication and reference associated with that Need, until resolution. The 'Need' is an entity with a location, representing a resource's presence or lack, with a description (text, audio, photo, video). The cultural connotation of 'Need' that makes most sense and fits the intention can be a variable. The Need has input, feedback, performance metrics and satisfaction data discoverable in the transaction logs. As an entity, it is able to broadcast requests, set virtual 'beacons' to repeat distress signal messages until response. Other actions would be set for when the phone battery dies. Perhaps a very low power drain sequence of bursts. I should know the status of those nearby so that I can offer, or request help. This again though, happens peer to peer rather than from a government or agency looking down. As a Need is echoed by others, it gains in 'reputability' and rises among the 'community view'. The decision of 'where' to send the Need is made by the Sender based upon a dashboard of respondents. Much like an inventory and ordering process. There is a cultural limitation (Some call a colonial attitude) that 'people can't be trusted' but disasters prove otherwise.
Why would they participate? Simple efficiency. Knowing a need or cluster of similar Needs is a solution to many logistics headaches that plague aid delivery. Predetermined needs and details creates efficiencies all they way up the supply chain. Predictive inputs would work in this case because it is citizens directly expressing their priorities to neighbors and forwarding to governance as needed. Not participating would be immediately known to all of the individuals in the system who are now stakeholders. Crowdmapping data flow is typically from: public to: a select group of public, all hoping that decision makers get to see it. The preferred flow is from citizens to one another and then to regional representation or agency/ngo as needed to restore normalcy. Letting citizens decide from what's available introduces self-efficacy into traumatic events and improves psychosocial outcomes.
Locals are listened to, but their ability to be at the forefront of decision making has only recently become a foreseeable reality. It remains to be seen to what degree innovation will be adopted, but the honest attempt has only been tried in fits and starts. There is no therapeutic reason to keep control of resources at the Agency level. Accordingly, if a few agencies display similar items in their warehouses it ought to be up to the Sender to decide which aid, from whom and how the aid is delivered. In this way reviews of past experiences can be collected and aid received from entities who prove themselves worth working with. An ecosystem of sensors and users could arise that thrives on mutual aid. If local resiliency programs prove efficacious then some level of governmental support becomes a very economical investment in efficiency. Letting citizens determine their recovery also allows for creativity that Ministers cannot recreate. Putting the onus then, on agencies to coordinate their own distribution system and governments to streamline the process of delivery because valid quantified data is streaming in from the countryside. Assessment and categorization would have already been accomplished by the Senders and verified by a third party as needed, but the rest is academic. With feedback loops, even austere environments can receive sufficient updates to spot and track theft during transport. Each successively complex layer of technology, tablets desktops etc. would be putting compute resources to rendering larger swaths of 3D and performing file conversion on new datasets as needed. The "views" (facets?) are what is being stored and shared. Layer hosting is not the object of this system. Neither is the point to produce a high volume of different maps but a consistent use of really effective ones, possibly cached. To be truly compassionate, the hardware nodes for such a system would need to rely upon safe components, free from conflict or exploitative history. I have been advocating for a Personality Server for some time. A device or cloud-mirrored storage and interaction exchange that would be an arbiter of one's personal presence. I imagined that advertisers and commerce would request information and pay for it. When a device was not in actual operation, mining Bitcoin is as viable purpose as any, particularly with solar powered installations.
An intuitive interface with drag and drop filenames using mathematical operators between layers would enable complex ideas to be conveyed without any number analysis. The window title becomes the names of the layers themselves and the operator state should be retained in the file itself. The collection of imagery URL's vector files, operators and filters could be called a "Perspective" and could be editable in applications like QGis just by inflating the contained layer files.