Hmmm. This video looks interesting. It purports to be of an Android mobile phone application called MapMaker for creating maps in disaster zones. Here is what the person who posted the video on YouTube says about the application:
Map Maker is an Android application for creating maps in a disaster zone. It is designed to allow aid workers to quickly and easily create a map of the area they are working in. After a disaster such as a hurricane or earthquake the landscape can change so fundamentally that existing maps are rendered out of date. Knowing things like which roads are passable, where field hospitals are and suitable aircraft landing areas makes it far easier to manage an emergency.
Unfortunately the video has no audio and there are very few details. If this turns out to be more than vapourware I'd like to see some additions to support NGO security. Labels and tags for minefields, no-go areas, checkpoints, safety hazards etc. would be very nice.
If the creator of this program is out there listening I'd love to beta test this!
Disaster relief workers may soon benefit from a new 'smart' suit being developed by I-Garment. The suit is intended to help remedy safety and communications problems faced by fire fighters but I can see its utility for humanitarian disaster response as well.
The suit is intended to address three familiar problems;
1. the unavailability of standard communications means during disasters, 2. the lack of information as to the whereabouts and safety of relief workers during emergency efforts, and 3. the problem of acquiring and distributing timely geospatial data during an emergency.