Ushahidi.com offers a simple, clean, visual map and gives people on the streets the ability to report from their cellphones on current conditions.
It’s a beautiful idea with broad applications for many kinds of geographically specific stories, from traffic updates in U.S. cities to election polling place information and crisis conditions in natural disasters. Ethan Zuckerman explains the project and gives background and broad thinking to how such technology can be used in other ways.
Zuckerman also links to a Jeff Jarvis blog posting from 2005 after Katrina, calling for people to convene, collaborate and use technology to share information and help those in need.
Jarvis said in September 2005: “This is about more than just technology and disasters. This is about technology and society, about empowering the people to run their lives and about how we in the web community can come together to help do that.”
H/T to Nancy White of Full Circle.