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Atrocity Prevention Challenge: Tips for Prototyping


Image credit: Horia via Flickr

We’ve been on an awesome journey in the Atrocity Prevention Challenge Ideas phase with over 150 posted ideas and more than 1000 conversations strengthening those ideas. Today we’re announcing our Top 17 shortlist. As we head into the Prototyping phase, our sponsors have seen a few themes emerge in the ways they think the ideas can be tested and prototyped:

Considering Contexts
Some of the ideas could either work well in geographically remote locations or in politically unstable regions where a government has shut down communication – but not both. As you refine and prototype your idea, which of those two problems is it best suited to tackle? Once you’ve decided, focus on the issues, opportunities and solutions of your chosen context.

Distress Signals
Some of the ideas also offer a way for individuals to signal distress. How can each of those ideas help those individuals share not just that they’re in trouble but specify the type of trouble they’re in or other relevant information? Additionally, can these signals work effectively inside already existing organisations? Sometimes the ideas assume there is someone on the other end who can monitor all incoming distress calls – but often smaller organisations already have some form of this. Can some of these individual distress signal ideas also apply to members of already formed groups?

We’ve seen a few themes emerge that we wanted to offer tips on as well:

Creating Incentives
One of the hardest things to do is change someone’s behavior. What incentives might each of these ideas provide to make participating in it easy, fun and natural? Sometimes the difference between a good and great prototype is the creative way people are incentivised to try it.

Think Like a Hacker
Another tricky issue in this challenge is security. We encourage you as you’re prototyping and testing these ideas to think like a hacker. If you were going to misuse the idea – how might you do so? And as a collaborator to improve the idea – how might you take that mentality and help strengthen the idea?

Now’s the time to roll up your sleeves, dive in and collaborate to prototype and test each idea. Before we jump in, we also wanted to take a moment to recognise our Honorable Mentions for this challenge:


And now, check out the shortlist and start prototyping! Keen to know more about how our Prototyping phase works? Check this lowdown.

Comments

Join the conversation and post a comment.

M. Ricciardi

May 02, 2013, 03:13AM
Question to OpenIdeo: regarding 'hacking' - are you asking for us to consider the use of computer hacking techniques ("legal or quasi-legal") to by-pass the limitations or problems with a given solution / concept? For example, phone systems and computer networks can be "hacked" without the user's knowledge (to plant a bug or program)...is this what you are suggesting? Thank you.

Paul Darragh

May 04, 2013, 17:23PM
My interpretation is that you need to look at the idea the way a hacker would look at the idea. If I were a hacker, how could I warp the idea to fit MY goals rather than the goal of protecting people? That way, you would hopefully find a method to prevent the warping of the idea. In your example, how could you prevent the hacking of a phone system not finding an easier way to hack it?
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