app: SocEnt Challenge
I spend a lot of time working out of HUB Ottawa, where being inspired and coming up with social enterprises has become a second habit. This led me to wonder “How can I make social entrepreneurship more accessible to those who aren’t working in this kind of environment?”
My latest app blends social entrepreneurship with business ideation and adds a twist of craziness to make the ultimate party game. SocEnt Challenge tries to break free from the norm of apps being a 1 person : 1 phone ratio. It’s the kind of game you can play with 3-5 friends at a bar or around your kitchen table.
- Force people to practice creative problem solving.
- Make Social Enterprise more accessible.
- Create an app that is an effective hybrid of real-world and digital interaction.
How to Play
A quick pilot at HUB Ottawa last Friday proved the game’s core principals successful and fun. I was showing the app to Vinod and minutes later we had a group of 5 huddled over an iPhone as we tried to come up with a ‘tech startup’ to tackle the issue of ‘HIV-AIDS stigma’ and using the theme of ‘Shiny’. We started getting desperate as the timer ran low, and started getting more creative. Our idea ended up being:
Highlight the great, aka. Shiny, moments in the lives of those living with HIV-AIDs through an online public diary that focuses solely on their good experiences.
The biggest take-away from my testing was that people didn’t want to play in structured way (see the rules above), people either played co-operatively shouting out ideas and melding them together or just took turns with the phone, pitching/speaking out loud as they formed their idea. People may play differently in other atmospheres, it was end of week WineDown, so lots of distractions going on.
Tech side of it
It was built over 3 days as a solo project: ideation, design, and development. It’s built using Construct2, which exports to HTML5, and offers Windows 8 and PhoneGap exporting. There are two versions, one is mobile optimised version and the other is an HD version with more pretty animations. It’s also available on Windows 8 and Windows Phone 7 (via PhoneGap). I use some php and MySQL via AJAX for storing and retrieving the submissions to the ‘Best of the Month’ challenge.
PhoneGap was a little disappointing for Windows Phone 7 performance, and actually performs better if I visit the site directly through the browser. My biggest lesson is I should have spliced up some of my sprites, they were too large, and are almost certainly killing the mobile speed.
This application does not collect or transmit any user’s personally identifiable information, except for the optional ‘socEnt’ ideas entered for the best of the month board. No personal information is used, stored, secured or disclosed by services this application works with.
Limited technical information is sent (such as IP addresses included in the HTTP calls the application makes) but none of that is used or stored.
A small set of non-identifiable information is sent to one or more of the organisations below for statistical information about app usage, device type and capabilities. Statistical service providers: