• Michael Weeding

Have we moved into the era of collaborative data sharing?

Ever since the traffic utility App Waze won the best overall mobile app in the 2013 Mobile World Congress there was always going to be a focus on the use of the crowd to provide data that creates a service. Combine the crowd and the sensor, which is the hottest piece of new technology to revolutionise our lives and you get BloomSky, the App that crowd sources the weather through the use of sensors. So will this disrupt weather forecasting?

BloomSky has just been launched on Kickstarter, the concept is that people install sensors, which have both the ability to collect data on the weather and a wide angle camera inside and outside their homes. Through the App users will be able to access this data and share it with other users.

The rationale is that people do not want to know what the weather is for an entire city, which is in many cases not correct, they want to be able to look up the weather at an exact location as the weather can be different across different parts of a city.

It makes sense but will something like this be a success and disrupt the age old process of weather forecasting? If you can look up the weather to this detail why would you ever need to take any notice of another weather forecast?

If you are like me you would be questioning the need to have access to such precise data on the weather at an exact location, but then again without a desperate need to know the weather I would not be in the target audience of Bloomsky of early adopters.

Then again who cares anyway what I think, the point is that with technology being so affordable, the BlolomSky is retailing at prices between $99 – $169, we can ask people to install sensors anywhere they please and if this data can be used to provide a utility to a few then a new utility has been created and in the end that is a good thing.

It will also not be the service you see rolled out over the next 12 months combining sensors and the crowd, so welcome to the era of collaborative data sharing.


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