NASA is calling all aspiring developers to build a smartwatch app for astronauts. The announcement was made over the weekend via The NASA Tournament Lab (NTL) on Freelancer.
“We (NASA) are interested in the emerging world of smartwatch technology and are looking to leverage this technology to create a smartwatch app that could be helpful to astronauts. The challenge is to design the general user interface for smartwatch applications for use on the International Space Station”, NTL wrote in the competition description on Freelancer.
NASA’s astronauts currently use laptops, tablets and iPads for communication, work and day to day tasks. According to the NTL, they want a smartwatch to assist astronauts in their tasks by providing a timeline of the past, present and future. They want the app to have the following defining features:
1. It should display an agenda view of the timeline as well as a way to easily navigate to another day in the past or future.
2. It should display color coded cautions and warnings.
3. It should tell whether or not the vehicle is currently able to communicate with the ground through either voice/video.
4. It should also have the ability to set timers for upcoming activities.
NTL is looking for all these functionalities in a single high-functioning app. It should also give appropriate feedback, innovatively displayed, for tasks which should be visible on a small Samsung Gear screen.
The deadline for the task is September 9. So, if you’re interested you have 3 weeks time. To enter the competition head on over to Freelancer.
NTL is the result of a collaboration between NASA and Freelancer. In the hopes to finding a solution, via this platform NASA is crowdsourcing some of the most complex problems faced by astronauts. However, this is not the first time NASA has opted for crowdsourcing. In May, they held the NASA Space Apps competition, which they have each year. The main aim is to find solutions that could be beneficial for not only astronauts but the people on earth.
NTL has already hosted several contests on Freelancer which you can still join. For more details, visit here.