mandag den 23. februar 2009

Videogame Technology Helps With Disaster Planning

I krisesituationer er det vigtigt at kunne reagere hurtigt. At man samtidigt og træffer de rette beslutninger kræver overblik og adgang til de rigtige data. Det kan lære noget af når man samler og levere GIS data ud til mange brugere - hvorfor skal man bruge måneder til at designe og udvikle sagbehandler værktøjer som andre tilsyneladende kan skrue sammen på timer ...

I situations of a crisis it is important to be able to act quickly. At the same time it is also crucial to take the right decisions - being able to do so require overview and access to the right data. This is possible and is done so here is something for all us to learn from. Why is it that is takes months to design and implement GIS tools for all to use on the net when other apparently can do the same within hours ...


By Kristen Philipkoski
Muttshack's David Friedman used Depiction to create this map, which he then used to coordinate animal rescue efforts during hurricane Gustav. 

Thanks to disaster-simulation software inspired by videogames, David Friedman has a new family member: Jordan, a yellow Labrador retriever puppy. The software helped emergency workers in Louisiana rescue Jordan — and 15,000 other stranded pets — during Hurricane Gustav.

"Going by boat across a flooded field and parking lot, I saw this little yellow thing in a tree floating in the river," Friedman said, a disaster-response coordinator with animal-rescue organizationMuttshack. "It was this little yellow puppy."

Volunteers like Friedman patched together an escape route for the animals using a disaster-preparedness simulator called Depiction. Friedman combined his amateur radio skills with simulations he had already created of the Baton Rouge area to map open roads, even without an internet connection. Volunteers picked up animals at 19 locations and coordinated 133 tractor trailers.

It's just one example of how disaster-modeling software can help responders create rescue plans in real time. During Katrina, some emergency workers used Google Earth Pro to map evacuation routes. Others have used MapPoint and XMap in crises. [...]

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