Seismology, smartphones, and the cloud come together in a new earthquake safety tool that demonstrates the true power of apps to save lives.
App programmers and public safety officials alike have high hopes for Quake Safe, an app developed by Indian developer Ketan Singh to sense the warning signs of an earthquake, giving users enough time to prepare and find safety. This amazing achievement, should it be adopted more widely, will serve as a testament to the important role that app developers can play in a world that runs on connected, mobile technology.
How it Works
According to the Hindustani Times, Quake Safe is sensitive to the slight shaking motions or tremors that precede an earthquake. If the app detects such motion, it automatically records data on its severity and duration, then sends it to a cloud-based server for analysis. If the server receives several reports from the same location within three seconds, the determination can safely be made that an earthquake is occurring.
At this point, Quake Safe will send push notifications to users near the earthquake’s epicenter, notifying them of the danger and sending instructions on how and where to get to safety. Supplied with an even larger number of reports, the app will send notifications to all users within 100 kilometers of the epicenter. Singh’s calculations suggest that once an earthquake has begun, people more than 60km away from the epicenter will have enough advanced warning to be able to reach safety.
Singh was motivated to create the app following the devastation caused by the Nepalese earthquake of 2015. To put this disaster in perspective, the earthquake killed more than 8,000 individuals, including people as far afield as India, China, and Bangladesh. An early warning system can prevent much of the human suffering caused by these events, giving people just the chance they need to take action before an earthquake strikes.
How Apps Can Save, Change and Uplift Lives
Each year, more and more people are making greater use of the technology in everyone’s pockets to help them live safer lives. And nowhere is this more true than in India. Take the ICE app created by the Mumbai Police Department. This app allows a user to call for help with one tap if they find themselves in danger — using GPS, this information is immediately relayed to the nearest officer.
See the video here:
ICE also allows users to input emergency contact details, and uses GPS to help them locate crucial facilities, like hospitals, in their area.
Creating Apps for the Future
If you’re anything like me, reading about amazing tools like Quake Safe and ICE has set your mind racing with ideas for apps you could create to make people’s lives safer and easier. DIY app-building platforms like AppMakr are here to put that ambition well within your reach. The platform is equipped to create apps with push notification functionality, so your users can get any new, perhaps vital information you send them rapidly and seamlessly.
India is showing the world how it’s done when it comes to using the latest tech to improve the quality of millions of lives — by 2019, the country is expected to produce more software developers than any other nation, according to Apps India 2016. India is truly a mobile-first country, and with this kind of technological approach to public safety, there’s no ceiling to what improvements the nation might bring in the future.
Oliver Meredith Cox
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