You may recall my previous coverage of Open Planet Ideas, a collaborative green/tech project, launched by Sony Europe and supported by WWF, in which the public were invited to submit their ideas on how to repurpose existing Sony technologies to help tackle environmental issues. Around 400 ideas were received.
The last time I reported they were looking for input to help choose which one of the final eight shortlisted ideas should go forward to further development by Sony engineers.
Well the winner was chosen in January. It was an online magazine for a green-minded community. News is broadcast to members to inspire participation in local projects. This news and project are related by tags and news is distributed to users depending on their location, time available and capabilities.
Sony has now announced that the final concept is being taken forward as +U, a mobile app that will make volunteering more accessible by making bite size volunteering opportunities easily available. Sony is partnering with YouthNet - the organisation behind Do-it, the UK's largest volunteering database - to create +U. It’s an android app that combines real world volunteering opportunities with social and gaming incentives. Potential volunteers will be matched with local projects through geo-location technology and will be rewarded with points based on the voluntary opportunities they complete They will also be able to share their experiences and achievements on their social networks.
Well it sounds very good and congratulations to the winners and to Sony for putting the process together. I can’t help being a little disappointed, though. When I first reported on Open Planet Ideas I described it as “an online community incubator for collaborative technology solutions to critical environmental issues. The idea is to identify issues and tackle them through the innovative use of Sony technology”. I sort of hoped for more than a phone app.