Singularity U Tackles EmComm

According to its website,

Singularity University (SU) is an interdisciplinary university whose mission is to assemble, educate and inspire a cadre of leaders who strive to understand and facilitate the development of exponentially advancing technologies in order to address humanity’s grand challenges. With the support of a broad range of leaders in academia, business and government, SU hopes to stimulate groundbreaking, disruptive thinking and solutions aimed at solving some of the planet’s most pressing challenges. SU is based at the NASA Ames campus in Silicon Valley.

They recently completed their first nine-week, graduate-level interdisciplinary program and, on August 27, presented results to SU faculty and staff and leaders from the Silicon Valley community in an “open academic exercise.”

One of the teams tackled the problem of emergency communications. Here’s what one reporter had to say:

Next to present was Team Xidar with its proposal to revolutionize the field of disaster recovery. According to Team Xidar, there is a golden window of 24 hours after an earthquake or other major disaster when thousands of lives can be saved or lost, depending on whether proper treatment and triage can be allocated to those in need. By developing phone applications to provide crowdsourced information about the location and status of those in need as well as those in a position to provide help, Team Xidar proposes to radically change disaster response. The application can be supplemented dynamically with critical information, such as fire extinguisher locations, rendezvous coordinates, etc. to give those in need the information they need to survive.

Hmmmmmm. I wonder if these guys ever considered that cellphones won’t be working in a real disaster? You can bet that they didn’t include amateur radio in their proposal.

Someone should really get in touch with these folks and critique this work.

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