The future is now, especially for kids who grew up in the '80s. We have smarter cars, smarter phones, and can access the web of the internet from virtually anywhere.
But, can all this technology be good for more than checking into social media? North Carolina firefighter/mobile app developer Patrick Jackson thinks so.
Using the latest in wearable technology – Google Glass – Jackson has created an app, FireFighterLog, that would give firefighters important information about current fires, dangers in a location, and even outlines of a structures blueprints, cutting down time they need to spend in a burning structure.
Sci-fi fans are all too familiar with the kind of technology Jackson is developing. Imagine a rescue crew with the same tech Batman or the Terminator might have. The ability to walk into a burning building blind and still find their way around could help firefighters save lives while protecting their own. Jackson is even working on a way for the app to warn firefighters that the building is unsafe or whether or not it may contain things like propane tanks, avoiding yet more loss of life.
But things were not that simple for Jackson. He did not have millions to throw at the tech like Wayne Enterprises or Skynet and the limited prototypes of Google Glass are not cheap.
Like so many budding inventors, Jackson turned to one of the many outlets for fund raising, Indiegogo. Asking a mere $2000 to get the ball rolling, he offered a live hangout with himself (because who doesn’t love firefighters?) and even a full demonstration of his technology. On his Indiegogo page Jackson details how the funds, which he exceeded by $10, would be used. You see, Jackson was one of 8000 people chosen to try out the early versions of Google Glass, but there were a few hurdles. First, he would need the $1500 plus tax for the device itself, and then he would need to get to New York to pick it up. Problem 2, he only had 14 days to raise the money and get to New York to pick up the device before his invitation expired.
Well, Jackson didn’t just make it to New York, his technology is so revolutionary he was contacted by Google to make a video of this amazing breakthrough.
Patrick Jackson is not about to stop there, as the app designer/hero has been in contact with doctors, including MD Christian Assad, to create a CPR app that will help walk people through preforming CPR. The instant CPR glass will open on the voice command “OK GLASS, CPRGLASS”. Information on performing CPR, including images, will then open for the user to follow. Glass will then contact emergency services using the wearers GPS location, keep track of the time CPR begins and the number of compressions to get a victims heart going, and send a text message to the closest hospital regarding the ongoing treatment so doctors will have the history in hand when the victims arrives at the hospital, all while playing Staying Alive to help the user follow the rhythm for compressions. This app was recently featured in Forbes Magazine and has the potential to save hundreds of lives.
For hardcore techies wondering just how Jacksons app works, he outlines his goals on his Blogspot page.
“My plan for using Glass in the fire services its to use Google Appegine to host fire departments data in a cloud server. The Data will be hosted in a datastore. When an incident is sent from the dispatch center the incident location and nature will be sent to the Google Glass. Location information for the address will also be sent to the Google Glass and immediately available to view.”
Jackson further outlines his plan on his blog, Android in the Fire Service. While still in its infancy, Jackson’s applications, and those like them, will revolutionize the way we live, making the best of science fiction into a beautiful reality.
Google continues to encourage developers to make advancements in application development and has put out a call for Glass Explorers – app designers like Patrick Jackson – to take the new wearable technology to the next level.