Kitestring is a web app that checks up on its user via SMS and sends a message to the user’s emergency contacts if they fail to respond.
To get started with Kitestring, the user needs to add emergency contact numbers to their account. When they go out on a trip, they can simply “Start a trip” on Kitestring and key in when they expect to be back. The app will check up on the user via SMS at the time specified. The user just needs to reply to check in. If the user fails to respond, the app will send a customized text message to the user’s emergency contact.
Users can extend their estimated time of arrival if they’re running late or check in if they got in early. The app’s notification service runs on Kitestring’s servers, so the service doesn’t depend on the availability of the user’s phone.
The app seems to be perfect for those who go on trips alone and want to make sure there’s someone checking up on them. The app can also work for adventurous types or journalists working on the field.
Developed by Stephan Boyer, a graduate student in computer science at MIT.
The Solar LED Lifebuoy makes perfect sense in a rescue scenario. It’s basically a simple lifesaver with some solar tech applied to it. The benefit of the concept is that in case you’re overboard and with this lifesaver around you, spotting you in low lights will not be an issue. Moreover the solar tech takes care of the battery charging part.
Designer: Xianlong Wen
Today is my birthday, and this morning when I opened up my Chrome browser I saw this and it inspired the shit out of me.
See the alt-text? It says "Happy Birthday Ben". Google made me a Doodle for my birthday! much internet. very wow.
My ego obviously loved this, so it makes sense that I'd be inspired by it. But beyond that what's so awesome about it is that somebody (or a handful of people) at Google thought about how delightful this would be for somebody, and actually took the time to work this in as a feature. It reminds me of the piece Keith wrote on Medium about the restaurant that screwed up his fiancée's order. This is one of many Google smoothies, but it goes to show that it really is the small things that make a big difference. And that's exactly the kind of inspiration I need right now.