Katrina PeopleFinder Wiki
Date: Thursday, September 08 2005
Topic: Canadian Activism
Just got this today from the ESPA listserv in Edmonton. I thought it was an interesting idea, so I checked out the site and unfortunately they have temporarily suspended data entry while they improve their forms and develop their tutorials. But you can still register for the next round of data entry or start gathering shelter info at the related PeopleFinderShelters database project.
Here's the info:
This just in from the T:AP peace list...
Hello again, everyone
I've spent the last few days reading story after story in news sites and weblogs, and really just shaking with anger at what's happening in New Orleans and the surrounding areas, and the utter incompetence of the people who should have first prevented, and then alleviated the situation. And I'm all the way out here, in Southeast Asia, and wondering what to do. Yes, I can donate money; but I also wanted to do something with my time, something active.
Fortunately, I ran into a group of fellow computer-geeks who have set up a service for finding people. The website http://18.104.22.168/wiki/index.php/PeopleFinderVolunteer collects data by parsing hundreds, or thousands, of websites (news, personal...).
The data deals with people looking for relatives; this is a huge problem now, especially where children are involved.
Families have been torn apart, and many people don't know where their loved ones are. The goal of PeopleFinder is to create a
large database for people to search.
For this, they need as many volunteers as they can get. The first thing to know is that you do NOT need to be a computer
expert to do this. If you can fill out a form (and we've all filled online forms at some point) you can help. It also doesn't
require an ongoing commitment. An hour or two will help, and you can come back as often as you want. The instructions on the
page as very clear, very easy to follow.
So I just wanted to get the word out on this project, in case anyone is interested and has time. We all spend some time
online, and know our way around computers (to varying degrees), so it's one more possibility, another way to help. And if
some of you do have knowledge of programming, the project is looking for that kind of help too.
I'll let you all know how it goes; please feel free to ask any questions about this.