Forums | New application idea: Crowdsourcing avalnche reporting.
Here’s your chance to tell everyone about everything and anything to do with backcountry skiing. Follow the simple steps to register and WHAMMY, you’re in. If you are pulling your hair out with frustration, have a look at the help forums for answers or take a pause and drop us an email at: firstname.lastname@example.org. We’ll do our best to help out as soon as we can (but all bets are off on a powder day, obviously).
I had an idea for trying to improve the amount of information we have available to us before we head into the backcountry.
There is currently a whole host of great information available to us provided by people such as the Canadian Avalanche Centre (CAC; http://www.avalanche.ca). Avalanche forecasts give us a great general understanding of what the snowpack is doing and what it is forecast to do. My idea is to leverage the community to crowdsource information on actual avalanches or instabilities in the snowpack that we witness when we are out on trips.
Here is a rough outline of the functionality of the application. It would allow people to submit reports by emailing in a photo and a description (meaning you snap a photo on your smartphone enter a description and the just email it in). The photo will then be placed on a map and any users who have subscribed to receive information on that area will receive a notification. Hopefully this will complement the existing information available, and give us a stronger and safer understanding of conditions before we head out into the backcountry.
At the moment I haven's started building it and just wanted to get feedback and see if people think it is a good idea. I called it http://avybalst.com, if you think it is a good idea just signup and leave your email.
Sounds like a good idea. I clicked your link and it's gotta a typo. So for peeps checking this out, look up http://www.avyblast.com
One thought I had at first was about what kind of experience level of the person are you getting info from. Most definately you can't argue with pictures out there. But more detailed analysis from people may be questioned. Perhaps for each person submitting, there could be a rating scale of some sort to clarify there experience levels?? I'm sure you've considered this and many other issues with this time of info sharing.
Anyhow, i think it's a good idea. The more information shared out there the better.
I agree with you about the experience level. This is one of my biggest worries actually. Let's say the risk is high and you only receive one notification that week of a small class 1 slip. I would not want people to get lulled into a false sense of security. I guess I would have to make that very clear. Really it is just a way to receive more data on current conditions, not an analysis stream. Maybe you could have real experts who use the data to help derive more accurate forecasts. An experience level rating could also be another good idea.