Saving People Through A Map Interface

How many times have we experienced the power of map illustration which helped us in one way or another? You can either be a tourist exploring a foreign country or someone who just needed to get to a certain unexplored region and maps have proven to be useful in many cases.

One of the recent innovations is a map interface that could help save lives especially those of living in remote areas. The interface is calledMapSwipe and its smart design motivates users to put in the map the locations that are unmapped yet. With this, aid workers will be able to find people who are looking for help in their crisis. The application was honored during the 2017 Innovation By Design Awards which is hosted by Fast Company.

The minds behind the map interface refer to it as Tinder designed for humanitarian causes. MapSwipe is a collaboration of efforts from various organizations including American Red Cross, Doctors Without Borders and many more nonprofit organizations. They introduced the idea to Sadok Cervantes who is known as a lead product designer and the one who designed the app. It was in March 2016 when the idea was presented to him and Cervantes thought at first that the app is just another one trying to board the hype train. Cervantes is a freelance designer who loves to work for humanitarian causes so he knew right away that the organizations behind MapSwipe are thinking of an app that can be used by anyone, easy to use as well as accessible.

According to the developer team of MSF, they followed the model of the Tinder app because it is the best solution to the problem of locating individuals who are living in remote areas especially those regions that are still unmapped. This app will be very useful during times of disasters or crisis. It can help outbreaks of diseases like the one that happened in Congo where there was a measles epidemic in 2015. Aid organizations will be able to respond right away and go to the area to vaccinate the residents of the affected area.

The problem is that MSF and Red Cross cannot rely solely on Google Maps and existing maps to find these locations since they are located in remote areas. This is where medical emergencies and humanitarian crisis are happening the most and the worst part is that help is nowhere in sight for them but thanks to map illustration and innovations such as MapSwipe, these people can now be rescued in times of crisis.