Develop a web tool, mobile device app or add-on for existing apps or websites that leverages NASA imagery and climate data to illustrate the impacts of our changing Earth in areas of interest to you. Some ideas to explore include:

  • Use NASA Earth observations data, social media, smart phones, and Short Message Service (SMS) text phones to collect Earth observations and connect public in local, regional, and national networks to communicate about our changing planet.
  • Examine current natural events curated by NASA’s EONET (Earth Observatory Natural Event Tracker) by browsing global historical and near real-time imagery from space.
  • Upload images or other data points demonstrating visible observations and how they compare to satellite data. For example, generating early-warning alerts or validating precipitation rates reported from NASA’s Global Precipitation Measurement Mission.
  • Integrate NASA imagery with a mobile assistant to allow for dynamic image generation based on a basic request structure.

WorldView is an excellent site built by NASA that allows the public to explore real time and historical visual earth data sets. There are only two problems with it: It could work better on mobile devices and it should be a globe.

We are building an app called PlanetView for the iPad. It's a native mobile version of Worldview that's fast and pretty. We're using the back end provided by NASA (GIBS) and borrowing some of the configuration files and graphic assets from Worldview itself.

This may sound complex, but PlanetView is based on an open source toolkit called WhirlyGlobe-Maply which is used in a variety of globe and map apps like Dark Sky or National Geographic World Atlas. So we've already got the globe thing down. Most of the project is configuration and user interface.

Our goal is to produce a minimal version of the app suitable for publishing on Apple's App Store. The code and toolkit are open source, of course, so where it goes from there... we'll see!

Resources Used

We used the NASA GIBS back end for the data display.

We also used Worldview's configuration files and some of its graphic assets.

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