Friday, May 13, 2011
Got an Idea that Could Change the World? Create an App!Words by Courtney Kellar Words by Carolyn, the Anti-Bride
Photos courtesy of Nokia
In between running around on press trips for Destination I Do Magazine, and keeping our blog going, I’ve been working on a very rewarding project with Nokia and my fab business partner Clarissa Nicosia: GreenGlamGo.com. It’s a fun, exhausting and exhilarating endeavor where I get to flex my tech-ie muscle in the form of the first green fashion app on mobile and merge it with inspirational and under the radar, sustainable and handmade fashion designers and retailers. Being able to work with the creative ninja’s at the Nokia Ideas Project, I’ve learned that indeed, certain corporations are leading by example and funding projects that raise awareness for issues that matter. The best part of GreenGlamGo is that we get to write about and feature creatives we love: Dannijo.com, KittyAndrews.com, MyBoaStyle.com, Chroniclebooks.com and Ecobeautifulweddings.com (Katie’s books!) and have a green bridal section as well. Green and sustainable can be glam and we thank Nokia for including us in the Apps for Change challenge. We are honored to be a part of it!
Excerpted from Nokia Ideas Project Site: 5.11.11
Not long ago, inventors and inventiveness were confined to a narrow domain. If you weren’t the sort of person who created new things for a living, you put aside your big ideas and got on with the practicalities of life.
All that changed with the advent of the app. Suddenly the practicalities of life have become the inspiration for big ideas and the place our inventiveness is needed most. Apps, and the ease with which we can access and create them, have turned many of us back into inventors, and put it into our heads that we too can bring our big ideas to life – and maybe even change the world.
An app developer can now be anyone, from an entrepreneur in Nairobi to a fashion designer in San Francisco. Recently, IdeasProject launched the Apps For Change Challenge and invited people to submit their ideas for apps that could change the world. Ideas came from all over the world and from all walks of life. Now, Nokia’s newly re-launched IdeasProject is specifically asking developers to share their ideas for apps to make the world a better place. Below are some exciting examples from recent developers and one from last year whose work continues to inspire us. If you’re a developer and are inspired by the ideas you see, we invite you to share your idea for an app that will make the world a better place.
Putting the Glamour in Mobile
GreenGlamGo was borne of a meeting between two friends who felt there was no outlet for the gorgeous work they saw being done by their friends in the green and sustainable fashion world. Carolyn Gerin and Clarissa Nicosia hatched the idea for an online, green shopping mall, contacted some friends in the tech industry and GreenGlamGo was born. Nokia came on board to help them develop the app for its C7 and N8 phones and suddenly their idea had global reach.
GreenGlamGo’s support of ethical practices is obviously important to the founders and to their customers. But their success has as much to do with their not to losing sight of the Glam aspect along the way. As Nicosia puts it, “Green fashion doesn’t have to have that weird, crunchy, granola vibe. There are sophisticated items and beautiful clothing out there.”
If GreenGlamGo appears to be one of those “I could have thought of that” successes, what makes it unique is the way it folds the green and glam components into a user experience that is basic yet comprehensive. “Consumers want quick, easy, clean, simple messaging,” says Nicosia, “[with GreenGlamGo] a girl can shop while she’s standing in line for coffee.”
GreenGlamGo also reflects the kind of global reach that characterizes many of the app ideas on IdeasProject. “What’s great about the mobile application, and using Nokia,” says Nicosia, “is that we have brands and companies from all over the world.”
Global Challenge, Local Impact
Nokia’s Global Economy Venture Challenge in 2010 was an incredible venue for developers with the potential to lead businesses and have a positive impact on the planet. With the added incentive of a million dollar development deal, the challenge attracted ideas and individuals from dozens of different countries.
John Waibochi, from Kenya, was selected as the winner for his Virtual City app, which empowers traveling sales agents in developing countries to manage their transactions on a mobile device. The app provides a safe and organized infrastructure and a way to avoid having to carry cash.
“A lot of these small distributors have sales people that are either on foot or bicycles or motorcycles,” Waibochi explains. “We automate the paper process that they had to use before. We’re now looking at how we can automate the cash that they used to carry.” Read more about Waibochi and Virtual City in our article from last year.
A final app idea, from Nokia’s INdT development labs in Brazil, is a game called My Little Plant. The app fosters a deeper awareness of how changes in weather in the Amazon affect plants by allowing users to care for a native guaranazeiro plant. Users win little stars by paying attention to Amazon climate conditions, getting rid of enemies, and using tools to make their plant grow strong. The plant is virtual, of course, but the weather, how it affects life in the Amazon, and our planet overall, is very real.
With challenges like the above ones confronting us every day, and technology to help us provide solutions in the form of apps, IdeasProject invites you to share your solutions to challenges you see in your part of the world.
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