PulsePoint App shown on Phones - Image

Open Data: Give us PulsePoint

Triangle, NC – A post by Yo Yoshida on August 29, 2013 is “A Call for Local, Open Data

In order for all citizens to truly benefit from open data, every city, county, and state needs to make their data more accessible.

One of the promising Apps coming from Open Data is the PulsePoint App. There is more good information in the article, and you should read the full article, but I will stop with PulsePoint.


Earlier this year, Contra Costa County in California launched the PulsePoint mobile application. The app notifies smartphone users who are trained in CPR when someone nearby may be in need of the lifesaving procedure.

PulsePoint is a 501(c)(3) non-profit foundation based in the San Francisco Bay Area. Our mission is to make it much easier for citizens who are trained in CPR to use their life saving skills to do just that…save lives!

PulsePoint App – PSA from Fire Department on Vimeo.

To date, 26 municipalities have adopted PulsePoint.

Bring PulsePoint to the Triangle

In May at CityCamp NC, the Keynote speaker – Adriel Hampton, VP of Community at NationBuilder introduced us to PulsePoint. I am part of a team that wants to bring PulsePoint to the Triangle (See Article).

This seemed to be so easy! The App is available, the foundation exists to support the app long term so all we need to do is to hook into it and turn it on, right?  The members of the team have been making contacts and finding out lots of information.  3 months have passed and we don’t seem to be closer to the goal.

The Triangle is Complex

Rolling out the App in one city requires one Emergency Dispatch service and one municipality to get behind the effort. The Triangle is composed of multiple Counties, Municipalities and Emergency Dispatch Centers.

The municipal boundaries in the Triangle are not so clear to its residents. We may live in Raleigh, work in Morrisville, eat in Durham and attend a sporting event in Cary, all in one day (well maybe, but you get the idea). So everyone needs to be on board to bring PulsePoint to the Triangle.

Our ecosystem is ripe for PulsePoint. The Triangle is full of people who are civically minded. Lots of us are CPR trained and want to help. Many municipalities and counties have an Automated External Defibrillator (AED) inventory as part of their strategic plans. How cool would it be to leverage the Technology we carry constantly and help to save lives!

How Can I Help?

Contact your elected officials and let them know that you think that bringing PulsePoint to the Triangle is important.

Let Ian Henshaw know that you want to join in the team effort.

NCDevCon 2013 Logo

NCDevCon Returns in September

Raleigh, NC – NCDevCon, associates, and sponsors are organizing the NCDevCon 2013 Conference (NCDevCon) to be held September 21-22, 2013 on the Centennial Campus of NC State University in Raleigh, North Carolina. The conference will cover a wide variety of web development and design topics including HTML5, Mobile, JavaScript, ColdFusion and CSS.

Registration for the event will be $200 which includes:

  • Entry to the weekend event and all presentations
  • Lunch (both days)
  • Coffee, drinks and snacks (both days)
  • Conference shirt
  • Saturday evening networking event

NCDevCon will be held at the College of Textiles on the Centennial Campus, NC State University, Raleigh, North Carolina.

Conference schedule

  • Saturday 8AM – 9AM – Registration
  • Saturday 9AM – 6PM Sessions
  • Saturday 6PM – 9PM Afterparty at the conference location
  • Sunday 8AM-9AM – Registration
  • Sunday 9AM – 4PM Sessions

Check the NCDevCon website for more details and register for the event now to save your spot!

Pulse Point logo

Pulse Point for the Triangle

Raleigh, NC – CityCamp NC and the National Day of Civic Hacking took up most of the end of my week, but it was time well spent.


The Keynote speaker, Adriel Hampton, VP of Community at NationBuilder, presented Pulse Point as a valuable community app to save lives.

One session of the CityCamp NC unconference I attended on Thursday focused on Pulse Point. The group was diverse, well connected and we felt that we could bring Pulse Point to the Triangle.

What is Pulse Point?

Pulse Point is an app that notifies citizens trained in CPR of a nearby emergency that requires their expertise. Those within a half-mile radius, who have downloaded the app will receive a text message informing them of the incident. A notice appears with the location or address if in a public place. If the event occurs at a private residence, only the street name is displayed.

The app works in conjunction with 911 technologies. This is done in a continued effort to minimize the time between the sudden cardiac arrest events and the start of CPR. The hope is to increase survival rates. Locations of AED’s (Automated External Defibrillators) are shown on the app.

The Statistics

The chance of surviving an heart attack decreases by 10% for every minute that passes without defibrillation. Brain damage starts at ~6 minutes. The average national response time for emergency services is ~7 minutes.

Only about one quarter of Sudden Cardiac Arrest victims receive bystander CPR, and public access Automated External Defibrillators (AEDs) are used less than 3% of the time when needed and available.

The Team Forms

On Friday, a few of the people from the unconference session gathered to see what we could do with Pulse Point. Chris Mathews from Wake County IS brought a view from inside the 911 Emergency Center from a technology perspective. Brett Husbands, the CEO of Firmstep had been involved with the adoption of Pulse Point in California, and brought the resources of his company to the team.

Chris contacted Dr. Brent Myers, EMS Director for Wake County and found that Brent had seen the Pulse Point implementation in Columbus, OH and in his words “EMS readily endorses implementation of this application [Pulse Point]”, but resource issues prevent Wake County from implementing Pulse Point at present. Chris spent quite a lot of time looking into what it would take to integrate the Pulse Point API into the Wake County/Raleigh CAD (Computer Aided Dispatch) system .

Brett took on the task of developing a nationwide AED map that could be used by any agency that would implement the Pulse Point app.

We were joined by Dana Magliola from BaerPoint Communications to help us put together a presentation, Ben Berkowitz from SeeClickFix who modified the SeeClickFix interface to allow geolocation of AED’s and Ian Cillay who took the information from SeeClickFix to input the locations into the Triangle Wiki.

The Presentation


We competed against 6 teams and took 3rd place in the CityCamp NC competition.

The members of the team – Brett, Chris and myself feel that Pulse Point is needed in the Triangle and we are committed to bringing Pulse Point to the Triangle. The winnings from the event have been put into a seed fund to assist the adoption of this life-saving technology.

What is Next?

We need partners!

  • Counties – Wake, Durham, Orange, etc.
  • 911 Dispatch agencies in the Triangle
  • Hospitals – UNC, Wake, Duke
  • Chambers of Commerce – Raleigh, Cary, Durham, etc.
  • Non-Profits – American Heart Association, etc.

Look for Pulse Point to come to the Triangle area soon!

RGreenway Image

RGreenway Expands to Include Cary

Cary, NC – There is good news today for everyone in the Triangle. The RGreenway App has been updated to include all of the 68-miles of greenways in Cary.

Previous to today only the Raleigh greenways were shown and the Raleigh boundaries were like the end of the word for greenway users. Now the greenways are continuous on the App all over Raleigh and Cary. This is a great step forward. We look forward to all the Triangle area greenways being added over time.

RGreenway Development

RGreenway was the winning proposal of CityCamp Raleigh in 2012. The application is not a product of the City of Raleigh. It was created by the RGreenway team and was built using open data available through the official Raleigh Geoportal.

RGreenway is available for iPhone, iPad and Android. It’s free. Visit RGreenway and get the app for yourself. If you already have the RGreenway App, then you will need to update to version 2.0 to see the Cary greenways.

What is CityCamp?

From the CityCamp Website we find the following:

CityCamp is an unconference focused on innovation for municipal governments and community organizations. As an unconference, content for CityCamp is not programmed for a passive audience. Instead, content is created and organized by participants and coordinated by facilitators. Participants are expected to play active roles in sessions. This provides an excellent format for creative, open exchange geared toward action.

When is the next CityCamp in NC?

CityCamp Raleigh has recently become CityCamp NC to be more of a state wide initiative. The next CityCamp NC is scheduled for May 30-31, 2013.

If you have the skills and interest you will not want to miss the upcoming CityCamp NC so register today. Who knows what new cool Apps will come out of CityCamp this Year!

Cisco forecasts staggering growth for mobile

The Coming Mobile Explosion

Cary, NC – The WRALtechwire article “Data-to-go: Cisco forecasts staggering growth for mobile“, reports a compound annual growth rate of 66 percent for mobile traffic.

“During the 2012 to 2017 forecast period, Cisco anticipates that global mobile data traffic will outpace global fixed data traffic by a factor of three.”


As a municipality or business are you planning your technology infrastructure to handle this explosion of mobile traffic? Are your website properties responsive?

Technology Tank has looked in detail at policies and implementation strategies for Mobile. Please contact Ian Henshaw for more information.

QR Code

QR Codes – Novel Municipal Use

In Rio de Janeiro they are embedding QR codes as mosaics into sidewalks to give visitors a way to find out a wealth of information about their surroundings.

Read more about it in the AP Article Brazil: bar codes on sidewalks give tourist info

QR Code

QR Codes – Best Practices

Cary, NC – With the ubiquitous mobile devices we now carry comes a very popular way of getting content – the QR code; short for Quick Response. We are seeing QR codes everywhere, but is it safe to image just any QR code you come across? The answer is NO.

Read more

Are you Maximizing your Parks & Rec Investments?

Story by Managing Partner Ian Henshaw. 

Cary, NC – Municipalities spend millions of dollars to build Parks and Recreation facilities.  Much time and effort is also spent in developing programming and then in advertising the programs.  With the explosion of mobile, social media and on-line search your citizens are now increasingly searching for information and activities with the major search engines, Google and Bing.

Read more

What’s a QR Code?

Story by Managing Partner Hal Goodtree. First published on

Cary, NC – Ever see those little boxes with a bunch of jaggy patterns in them? They’re called QR codes and they connect the world of print to the internet. Read more