Post-Paris Attacks, IBM Launches First Responder App Contest

In the wake of the ISIS terror attacks in Paris, some technology companies are looking ahead and preparing for the worst. IBM is giving developers access to its cloud to encourage disaster response-related app development.

Just days after Friday evening's attacks that killed 129 people and injured hundreds more in the French capital, IBM has launched the First Responder Application Challenge, which runs through December 14. The contest is being run in partnership with Vencore, an information solutions, engineering and analytics provider whose solutions are aimed at the U.S. government.

IBM and Vencore are coordinating with the United States Geospatial and Intelligence Foundation and the Association of Public-Safety Communications Officials to develop an app ecosystem that paves the way for new predictive analytic and mobile apps that help first responders operate more effectively. The apps will be built and delivered on the IBM Cloud and aim to leverage data to solve first responder challenges.

EUThe best innovation takes place when you drive toward a common goal,EU said Anne Altman, general manager of IBM U.S. Federal and Government Industries, in a statement. EUAnd itEUs no different in government, where an ecosystem of developers, academia, technologists and others come together to address challenges.EU

A Win-Win

HereEUs how it works: Challenge participants will use IBMEUs Bluemix cloud platform to build apps, just like participants in NASAEUs Space App Challenge did in April. IBM is doing a public service, but it's also gaining plenty of attention for its platform. The NASA challenge resulted in thousand of new Bluemix users, according to IBM.

To be sure, the challenge is part of Big BlueEUs larger goal to grow an ecosystem that drives both U.S. federal and public sector cloud adoption. As part of the announcement, IBM also revealed five new federal partners that are working to advance the hybrid cloud. These...

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