NASA Holds International Space Apps Challenge;
Preliminary Results Posted

April 23rd, 2012 by Erwin Gianchandani Post a comment »

NASA's International Space Apps Challenge [image courtesy NASA].Last October, we noted that NASA had announced plans to run an International Space Apps Challenge in early 2012, bringing together officials from international space agencies, scientists, and citizens in an effort to use publicly-released scientific data to create, build, and invent new solutions that address challenges of global importance, from the impact of weather upon the global economy to the depletion of ocean resources. The effort culminated this past weekend in a 48-hour global event in which over 2,000 participants developed more than 100 unique solutions addressing 71 challenges.

According to the International Space Apps Challenge Blog (following the link):

This weekend, NASA successfully fulfilled a commitment on behalf of the United States as part of the Open Government Partnership Domestic Action Plan. The stated goal of the event, per the US Action Plan, was to “promote innovation through international collaboration.” Space exploration was the ideal catalyst to foster this culture of innovation, and NASA, in collaboration with 8 government agencies and 103 other organizations, hosted the International Space Apps Challenge in 25 cities in 17 countries on all seven continents and online. The event held 21-22 April 2012 brought together 2,083 registered participants (ages 16-70) together to address 71 challenges. More than 100 unique solutions were developed in less then 48 hours during the event. All solutions were developed in a completely open source environment, and each have their own unique potential to go even further to address world and space technology challenges…

 

Global participants of the International Space Apps Challenge [image courtesy http://spaceappschallenge.org].

 

We have compiled a small cross-section of 11 examples, that represent the quality of the technology developed. Over the next few days, we will be featuring the top 50 solutions on this website and Innovaton Endeavors and Talent House will start the global judging process.

 

Predict the Sky — An app that combines ISS, HST and weather forecast data for a specified location to inform people about what they’ll be able to see in the night sky.

 

Planet Hopper — An app that visualizes Kepler data to allow children and teachers to explore all the exoplanets that we know about.

 

MyTravelImpact – An app that uses NASA weather satellite data to bring carbon footprint computation down to the individual level, allowing trends to be associated with decisions people make based on weather conditions and convenience of transportation options. Further application could include city planning based on climate change predictions.

 

Growers Nation — A collaboration between developers in Exeter, San Francisco, New York City, Santiago, Nairobi and Santo Domingo, that explores the potential of unused land for the growing of fruit, vegetable and other crops through the use of location, climate and agriculture data.

 

HazardMap — A real-time hazard map application that is powered by social media observations to help provide a a useful risk assessment for potential (and actual) crisis situations.

 

Commonality of NASA Datasets — A data schema attempts to capture the commonalities between datasets acquired by NASA to allow citizen scientists and data mining softwares to quickly locate relevant datasets required to answer questions posed in broad terms, such as “Has the sea level risen in the last 10 years?”

 

Aeration & Low Temperature Baking — An energy efficient, self sufficient process to produce ordinary, fresh bread with minimal ingredients at lower, safer temperatures in a limited resource environment.

 

Solar Wind Visualization — A desktop client that takes solar wind speed live from the web and produces an animation of the current wind speeds. The same feed is also used by an Arduino to show the live intensity of the solar winds by lighting more lights the more intense the winds.

 

NASA Open Data API — A preliminary design and schema for a NASA Open Data API to improve accessibility and a unified interface to NASA datasets without requiring specialist knowledge.

 

ISS Open Hardware Design — An open hardware design that visualizes the location of the ISS in space.  The distance is calculated and if closer than 15,000km (ground projection) lights are turned on using an Arduino. The closer the ISS the more lights that are lit topping out at 10 lights when within 0.5km.

 

A View from Space — An app that restricts a shared social media stream based on the orbit of the ISS in order to provide a common viewpoint and build a community around space data based on location.

To learn more, check out the International Space Apps Challenge website. And see our prior coverage here.

(Contributed by Erwin Gianchandani, CCC Director)