I’m relatively new to the humanetech community (thanks to Arnold for making me feel welcome) and am excited to contribute to the movement.
My cofounder and I were heavily inspired by Max Stossel’s video “Pandas Dancing” that challenges us to build technology that nudges us in the right direction and then gets out of the way.
To that end, we’re very interested in how we can use our phones to drive people to talk to each other in public spaces again instead of distraction. Walk into any coffee shop, park, bar, etc. today and you’ll see people sitting alone on their phones. Since this behavior has become the new social norm, a culture of distrust has formed and people simply don’t talk to each other or attempt to meet new people around them anymore.
To address this issue, we’ve created a simple app that helps people broadcast their social intent and make areas friendlier. We want to challenge everyone to improve the number of minutes everyday that they are “present”, or open to conversation, at the places you go in your everyday life.
The user experience would be to add your current location, create a simple nametag, and check in to indicate that you are approachable. As soon as the user walks a certain distance away from that location, they disappear from the app as a privacy feature.
We think that technology and the age of distraction has created rifts and distrust between us. The ultimate goal is to open up the app and see a community of accepting and open people. No swiping, no back and forth on messengers, just right here, right now.
We’d be grateful if you give our app, available on iOS and Android, a try at www.icebreaker.pro. Turn on EXPERT MODE in settings to add your current location.
Thanks so much for your feedback and would love to hear your opinions and ideas. We’re currently working on a website display to show how “friendly” you are compared to other users and surface interesting data about the friendliest places.