Saturday, 13 November 2010

Technology to the Rescue


It's very easy to see technology as the villain. However technology can be used in very positive ways to help the environment. Open Planet Ideas is an initiative between Sony and WWF that invites ideas on how technology can be used to address some of the pressing environmental issues that face us at the moment.

You too can join the challenge!  Currently there are over 150 ideas in six themes (Behaviour Change, Cleaner by Design, More with Less, Make it Real, Waste Not and  Recycling Revisited. Specific ideas include using technology to reduce waste or improve cooking methods, using rain as a power source or sharing ideas to reduce packaging waste.

My idea is to use mobile technology and CCTV to both help people improve their wildlife identification skills and at the same time to feed into wildlife recording schemes that are vital to the conservation of nature. This would tie in the image recording capabilities of mobile phones and CCTV cameras with the information held by wildlife organisations (such as the excellent online bird information on the RSPB website) to help with wildlife identification and then to tie in with recording systems (such as Birdtrack as run by the British Trust for Ornithology) to offer a interconnected system for both identification and recording, which would help individuals improve their wildlife identification skills and would help conservation organisations to record more wildlife. To find out more about the idea, you can visit this page and leave your comments.

Find Out More About Open Planet Ideas

There is a great potential for this scheme to generate a lot of ideas with potential to make environmental improvements. The best ideas will be selected and filtered to produce one final concept that Sony will research and develop. The winning device or idea will be made open source; Sony won’t profit directly from it.

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8 comments:

bunnits said...

An interesting and important project by Sony. Good luck on your submission. Great idea.

FARfetched said...

I like that idea — it could be easily extended to identify plants, given the time of year and general location. Knowing what's invasive and what really belongs there could be helpful.

Bill said...

Great idea, it would work where there is cell phone connectivity but out in the sticks where I live there would be no hope. Still most people live where this might be of great aid.

gabriellebryden said...

Sounds like a plan! Good one.

Hannah Stephenson said...

I have such limited knowledge of nature around me (I notice it, but don't always know what is what). I love the idea of your project!

Elizabeth Rimmer said...

More and moreI am coming to believe that it's not the technology, it's the mindset that's at fault. WEseem to think that the gadbet will fix it so we don't have to think about it - that never works.

Crafty Green Poet said...

Elizabeth - yes its the mindset that is the problem but as many people blame technology for problems as beleive in it as saviour

Farfetched - it could be extended to all sorts, I've concentrated on birds because the information is most easily accessible for birds

Bill - yes it wouldn't work everywhere that's true!

bunnits, gabrielle, hannah - thanks!

Lucy said...

'using rain as a power source'- now that sounds a good idea, especially round here lately!