NASA competition challenges freelancers to make a smartwatch app for astronauts
A new NASA contest ischallenging freelancers to design the interface for a smartwatch appfor use by astronauts aboard the ISS. The competition, posted on theFreelancer website, is set to run for one month, and will requireapplicants to tailor their app for operation on the Samsung Gear 2for the chance to win a US$1,500 prize.
Ordinarily, astronautsaboard the ISS are subject to constant monitoring and prompts fromground crew informing them how best to spend their time inan environment where every minute amounts to an (forgive the pun)astronomical expense.
In order to see areturn on this investment, operations must run as smoothly andefficiently as possible, and the addition of a multi-purpose smartwatch app could prove to be a significant step in the modernization of theday to day running of the station.
Competition applicants are notexpected to produce a functioning app, rather a design for theinterface of the watch must be submitted in the form of imagewireframes (PNG or JPEG) that draw attention to the design's layout,look, and feel.
The successful App design should be easy to navigate,while performing a number of functions. The interface mustinclude a crew timeline function allowing ISS personnel to keep ontop of a hectic schedule, a caution and warning application, afunction to inform the astronaut whether voice communication withmission control is possible, and a timer feature. Furthermore, overthe course of the day the App must be capable of prompting acrewmember with information relevant to the task at hand.
According to thecontest brief, all of the functions must fit within a singleapplication while remaining legible on the relatively smallsmartwatch screen.