California officials continue to fight the wildfires burning throughout the state. Once populated areas are now reduced to ashes. This type of natural disaster is among the world’s biggest challenges. But one organization is on a mission to improve the way we prepare for them and how to get relief when they hit.
The goal of Call for Code is to bring together developers from around the world to address some of the most pressing problems. Since its inception last year, groups compete for the top prize of $200,000 and support from IBM and the Linux Foundation to bring their technology to the market. While last year’s theme focused more on preparing and recovering from natural disasters, this year’s theme focuses more on the people affected by them. Prometeo’s technology is right on schedule.
The recent dry wind storm in California is the strongest the state has seen all season, and one of the strongest of the past few years. Many were forced out of their homes in northern and southern California. The governor declared a state of emergency because of the wildfires that resulted from the storm. This year’s winning team comprised of a trio of coders, a nurse, and a firefighter from Spain. They designed a device that can monitor the health and safety of first responders.
The device is an armband that the firefighter would put on his or her arm. It has a micro-controller, which connects to the Wi-Fi. There's also little chip that measures the humidity and temperature of the air. There's also a tiny microphone that measures smoke as well as carbon monoxide and other gases. It all gets processed and sent back to the lab for future processing.
The prototype is still in its testing phase. Prometeo says their invention is one step further to helping firefighters to safely battle the blaze, and others working in similar conditions.
For more on Call for Code and how you can help, visit https://callforcode.org/