UPDATE: I had to go back and update this text. I just received a pushed messaged from InstandWILD with a new Photo from Maasai Wilderness… It was taken two minutes ago. I was writing a text about global risks and how hard it is to get policy makers to think global I felt that this app should be mandatory for anyone in Government…
This is an app that is based on a similar to an idea I wanted to develop and discussed with Mattias Klum (who is a photographer) two three years ago what I hoped to establish a way for people to connect direction to nature and both explore nature (like this app) and connect with nature (by adopting an animal that was followed with the help of the app). So, given that I like the idea so much that I wanted to develop something similar it is hard for me to rate it.
On the one hand I’m really happy that someone did a smart app like this, and on the other and I feel frustrated as I had a few ideas that is not reflected in this… But still, the possibility to bring real nature into our everyday lives is such an important feature in a world where too many seem to forget the “real world” that is so full of beauty and mystery, not to mention innovation and design. This app really show what can be done with new technology.
This is how the creators describe the app:
"The Instant Wild App provides you with the ability to view the latest captured images from camera traps around the world, receive a notification when a camera—one you've elected to follow—takes a new photo, and help our conservation researchers by attempting to identify the species in the image (and learn a little about the species that are out there at the same time!).
Camera traps are a tool widely used in conservation work. They take a photo when a motion sensor detects movement within the field of view, and within a certain range. We use them when trying to find evidence of rare—or sometimes even previously undiscovered—species' existence in remote locations, and when attempting to assess numbers and migration patterns of a species, particularly one that is declining and even perhaps being pushed to the brink of extinction. This work is of enormous importance to us when we determine how to save and protect these species.
You can also keep a list of your favorite images and look out for new cameras being added to Instant Wild."
Read more about the project and app here http://www.edgeofexistence.org/instantwild/ and http://www.edgeofexistence.org/instant_wild/mobile_apps/ios_app_support.php
The best with the app/supporting initiative
+ The fact that it re-connects users with nature.
+ That it allows users to be part in discovering nature in an engaging way.
+ That it allow users to get a feeling of a nature where things are happing all the time.
The weak parts of the app/supporting initiative
- Only available for iPhone.
- That it does not allow for social networking and collaboration.
- Could be more ways to build on the interest of users generated from this app than it is in the current version.
What could accelerate this app/supporting initiative into a world changer?
➢ The app does what it does in a really good way, but to be a world changer the app could be developed further in many directions. The most important next step is probably to make sure that the curiosity among those using the app to look for animal can be supported further and brought up to the next level of engagement, regardless if people want to move into science or if they want to explore policy work.
How direct is the delivery of the result the app tries to achieve
- Long shot
Right now it is an indirect support for identifying animals, and an inspirational tool when it comes to transformative change.
How transformative is it
- A new world
- A major shift
- A bit of a shake-up
- A gentle rocking
The fact that we now can bring the far corners of the world into our pockets is truly inspiring. The fact that the app is used to explore areas that expand human knowledge and encourage people to think about things that are seldom seen in mainstream media is very interesting.
How much does it encourage collaborations
How much are new networks supported
- Strong support for global networks?
- Currently encourages new forms of collaboration
- Provides interesting opportunities in the future
- Restricted to a small (expert) group
Today it does not really encourage any collaboration at all. But the way to “crowd source” identification of biodiversity and the ability to select favorite photos are perfect as a start for different kind of collaborations.
What synergies can be delivered
How well does it also solve other problems/generate solutions
- It solves everything
- Several important challenges
- Some important challenges
- Only one challenge
Demonstrating that non-commercial knowledge, long-term work, including non-western/rich parts of the world is possible open up the doors to many interesting areas.
Nine billion contribution
How global is it? Is it helping/will it help everyone on the planet
- Instant global equality
- Almost global
- Getting (incrementally) global
- Not applicable
Given that it does not follow in the footsteps of the worst kind of conservation work (very unlikely) it could play an important role to make people understand and innovate in order to ensure that we reduce our pressure on the planet. People understanding the complexity and beauty of nature are likely to push for transformative changes that allow everyone on the planet to live a good life in a way that also give room for nature/biodiversity.
Building on current trends
How well does it use current trends
- The app is setting new trends by itself
- Building on multiple trends
- Effectively building on one trend
- Not really building on any major trend
The real-time connectivity is very interesting, as is the ability to get directly involved. But it is also difficult for the app as it ask people to move beyond current trends that encourage self-interest, ego-focus and simple gaming and that dominate the current mobile use. As this app is so good it can hopefully overcome the challenges and help establish a new narrative.
How fast can it deliver
- It's already happening
- In the coming weeks
- In a year or so
- In a distant future (hopefully)
The strength of this app is that it encourages long-term commitment in a time where fast and simple results dominate. So the fact that it will not deliver significant result directly is a significant strength.
Does it support transformative transparency
- Brave new transparency
- Transparency that is innovative (never seen before)
- Increased transparency, but nothing innovative
- No increase in transparency
Linking the world together in a way that make places most people don’t know about, or ignore, visible, is going to be an important part of the 21st century. If it was possible to control the camera in some way and/or to track the root causes to biodiversity loss back to consumption patterns in the west is would be "brave new transparency"