This Weekend’s Hackathon Brings Wearables to First Responders

Want to be part of changing the world with wearable technology? There are so many ways that wearables can improve our lives, starting with the people who protect us every day.

EMERGE, the new wearable technology accelerator from Tech Wildcatters is right around the corner, and they are hosting a hackathon at their Alto 211 headquarters this weekend. Hack for the Homeland will focus on wearable technology for first responder application, and the grand prize will be a $25,000 investment and automatic acceptance into the EMERGE accelerator powered by the Department of Homeland Security. Additional prizes (including a $1,000 cash prize) will also be awarded.

Hackers will develop wearable technology to help first responders (fire, police, EMS, search & rescue, etc) perform their jobs more safely and effectively while protecting and saving lives.

Specific Challenges to be addressed in Hack for the Homeland:

  1. Adrenaline fluctuations – leads to narrowed vision, impaired hearing, and majority number of firefighter deaths due to heart attack (on average 26 hours AFTER the event). Need ways to monitor and regulate before, during and after events.
  2. Environmental awareness – what are all the hidden dangers that the eye can’t see?
  3. Heat – all that gear plus adrenaline increases core body temperature. It needs to be monitored and managed.
  4. Mapping location of people – lots of reasons why off the shelf tech doesn’t work, including the fact that first responders aren’t walking around with data hubs just yet (i.e. smart phones). Believe it or not, the most common method is still a whiteboard.
  5. Mapping physical locations – indoors and out of jurisdiction (google maps doesn’t really work for disasters)

Register for the hackathon here

For more info on EMERGE, visit their website here.

  • Raquel Vincent is a Dallas-based creative with a knack for words and inspired creative direction. When she's not working, you can find Raquel hitting a gallery opening, working on her book, or thrifting for unforgettable vintage finds. She loves music festivals, tacos, and her rescue cat Berlioz.

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