A University of Alicante student has developed a collaborative system that allows any user to report on different environmental problems that may be found while walking around. This report may be sent to the relevant governmental agencies for them to correct it.
This collaborative smartphone app has been developed by the UA Department of Computer Science and Technology through the creation of a social network. It is in fact the final-year undergraduate projects (FYUP) of Computer Engineering student Francisco José Maciá Esclapez, proposed by his tutor José Luis Sánchez Romero, from the UniCAD research group of the same department.
Under the title «Development of a collaborative app for environmental management» the student has developed an application for Android devices that allows users, from anywhere in the world, to quickly and easily report an environmental issue that they may encounter on their way. Through photographs and by obtaining the user location, the app complements the subjective information that the person may have contributed. This app may solve one of the most common problems that users suffer when they are in places more or less far from urban areas, such as lack of coverage. The system stores the issues on the smartphone so that they can be sent later when the device can connect to the internet. The app can be used in Spanish and English in order to reach more users.
In addition, the project includes the creation of a management website so that the competent authorities have a centralised system to view the issues stored clearly and concisely. The system works using maps and simple forms with which the location and details of the various issues can be seen by clicking on them.
In order to avoid malpractice, this mobile application includes an automatic emailing system to the user who reports an issue to proceed with verification process.
According to lecturer José Luis Sánchez Romero, this app is an opportunity to contribute to taking care and respecting the environment. The next step is to offer the system for use in town councils, provincial councils and organisations that can benefit from it.