UH Hilo students create new "helpful" appUPDATED 8:18 PM HST Jul 06, 2013Video Transcript
the Capitol. A way for average citizens to become heroes by helping get the word out about hazards -- there's an app for that. And the UH Hilo students who created the app tonight are on their way to Russia to find out how their idea stands up against others around the world. KITV4's Jill Kuramoto spoke with a couple of the team members as they prepare to compete in the Imagine Cup Worldwide Finals. The app is called HELP ME HELP. And it gives any smartphone user the ability to be the first to alert others of hazards as it's happening. 1:29 THEY TAKE A PICTURE OF A HAZARD THAT THEY SEE AND IT WOULD GET UPLOADED TO A SERVER WHICH THEN GETS SENT TO OTHER USERS ON THEIR DEVICE SO THEY WOULD GET TO SEE WHERE THE other THINGS ARE. 1:38 What started as a class project by a student team from UH Hilo -- won the prestigious 2013 US Microsoft Imagine Cup Championships in May. And it's getting praise from emergency agencies. "GETTING LIVE OR REAL TIME PHOTOGRAPHS AS WELL AS THE GEOGRAPHIC INFORMATION -- THE LAT, LONG ,ADDRESSES -- AND THEN TAGGING IT WITH A PARTICULAR HAZARD IDENTIFIER, WOULD GIVE US THIS TREMENDOUS INFORMATION OF WHAT'S OCCURING IN THE COMMUNITY DURING AND POST OF A DISASTER." The team is now heading to St. Petersburg, Russia to compete in the Imagine Cup Worldwide Finals. 2:03 YEAH, I THINK WE'RE NERVOUS, BUT I THINK WE'RE JUST SO HAPPY TO GET THIS FAR Up against 32 other teams from around the world... Team Poli'ahu has been brushing off their emotional jitters and brushing up on their public speaking skills .. Preparing to sell their app to the judges in a 10 minute presentation. 2:14 THE SPEECH IS GOING TO BE A LITTLE NERVEWRACKING, BUT THAT'S GOING TO BE ON the FIRST DAY AND ONCE WE GET THAT OVER WITH WE'LL BE TRAVELING AND JUST TALKING WITH A BUNCH OF REALLY SMART PEOPLE AND WE'RE ALL LOOKING FORWARD TO THAT WHETHER WE WIN OR NOT. 2:23 Hawaii will be front and center in the presentation - focusing on how the app is useful in our island natural disasters -- what the team feels gives them the edge in the competition. 3:16 IT'S AN APP THAT WILL ACTUALLY IMPACT a lot OF PEOPLE AND COULD BE REALLY USEFUL RIGHT NOW TO a lot OF PEOPLE AS NATURAL DISASTERS SEEM TO BE HAPPENING EVERY FEW MONTHS 3:25 Jill Kuramoto, KITV4 News. There's a million dollars in cash and prizes at stake in this competition. Win or not... Team members say they're planning for careers in computer science.