Tech for Good Ten: driverless taxis in Singapore, Yahoo's abuse-detecting algorithm, crowdsourced mapping in Nicaragua and stitches that double as data trackers

2nd August 2016 Posted by: Sam Firman

Welcome to the Tech For Good Ten, where we share the best 10 links in the Tech For Good world from the past seven days.

We’re aiming to share a wide range of links, meeting the people behind the latest digital innovations, showcasing the greatest tech for good products, looking at the future of social change technology, and exploring the themes and social issues that technology is tackling locally and globally.

Most importantly, we’ll be meeting the people and institutions who are actually using this technology, showing the positive difference it makes in their lives, their communities and the world around them.

We’re also encouraging debate around “What exactly is Tech For Good?” Join the debate in the comments below. We’re here to discuss all things Tech For Good. Got a link to share with the Tech For Good Team? Tweet us at  @techfotgoodtv  or leave a comment on our Facebook page.

Tech For Good Ten | 02.08.2016

1//  New database on surveillance companies

Privacy International, a London-based watchdog, has launched a new searchable database on hundreds of surveillance companies across the world, as part of an effort to track a murky industry. Created in collaboration with Transparency Toolkit, the Surveillance Industry Index (SII) includes information on more than 520 surveillance companies, as well as the technology they have exported to government agencies and telecommunications companies. Privacy International has also released a report that tracks the growth and development of the global surveillance industry since the 1970s.

2//  Driverless taxis to be piloted in Singapore

Delphi has announced that it will provide a fleet of self-driving cars to the Singapore Land Transport Authority, along with software for a mobility-on-demand programme, in order to pilot a driverless-taxi scheme in Singapore. NuTonomy, an MIT offshoot, has launched a similar programme.

3// Yahoo design highly effective anti-abuse algorithm

Yahoo has created an abuse-detecting algorithm that can accurately identify whether online comments contain hate speech or not. In 90% of test cases Yahoo's algorithm was able to correctly identify that a comment was abusive – a level of accuracy that the study claims outperforms other "state-of-the-art" deep learning approaches.

4//  Emergency Location Service launched on Android

Android now has a new Emergency Location Service, which will help emergency service providers find your exact location when dialling 999 or 112 from a mobile device.

5//  MIT researchers design cheap device to monitor home-appliance energy usage

A team of researchers at MIT has developed a device designed to give homeowners a better picture of how much power their individual appliances are eating up. The gadget, which was outlined in a paper published in a recent edition of theIEEE Sensors Journal, offers a simple installation process that involves securing it over a power line with a zip tie. MIT estimates a commercial price of between $25 and $30.

6//  US launches Solar Training Network to boost solar workforce

The number of US solar jobs has more than doubled in the past six years. The $2.1 million Solar Training Network, funded by the US Department of Energy’s SunShot Initiative, could provide the staff required to continue the solar revolution.

7//  Crowdsourced bus mapping in Managua, Nicaragua

A group of volunteers have teamed up with university students to crowdsource what they believe to be the first comprehensive bus map in Latin America, in Managua, Nicaragua. The map is available online, and is connected to the Humanitarian OpenStreetMap initiative that uses open-source technology and crowdsourcing technology to create mapping in unmapped areas.

8//  Tufts researchers design stitches that double as data trackers

A team of researchers from Tufts University are developing a prototype for smart stitches which can be used like ordinary stitches to seal wounds, but will double as real-time data trackers.

9//  911 Bot: emergency-operator bot for messaging apps

Ombre Klinger, Tomer Coreanu and Hadar Landao have created a bot that serves as a 911 emergency operator using messaging apps. The bot was created as part of TechCrunch Disrupt 2016.

10//  Black Sheep: improving migrant-integration initiatives in France

Two French students have launched Black Sheep. The project seeks to map migrant-integration initiatives in France, establish the problems they face, and then research and learn from comparable initiatives abroad to help solve those problems.


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