Need to know if your old bottles are recyclable? There’s an app for that, thanks to the Victorian government’s App My State competition.
The competition was designed to both promote an open government a provide Victorians with useful web and mobile tools, and saw a few exciting entries from local developers.
The winners were announced this week, with Which Bin? taking out first prize amongst 74 application entries and 96 application ideas, and netting developer Jason Smale a cool $35,000.
“Many Victorians are unsure what household items can be recycled and Jason’s innovative app gives people a quick answer to a common problem,” said Premier John Brumby.
To use the app, you simply need to point your iPhone camera at the barcode of an item, such as a food packet or carton, and it will be matched to an item in its database. The app shows an image of the correct bin for your particular area and a message explaining whether the item can be recycled or not.
Which Bin? currently only works as a web app, but the iPhone version will be available on the App Store in the future.
Second prize was awarded to another web app, Transportle, that calculates a route for users to get from one location to another, and suggests possible transport options based on carbon, financial and health costs. It’s a pretty slick implementation, and thankfully there is an iPhone app currently in development.
Third prize went to the iPhone app myMarkets Vic, a nicely designed interface that lets you quickly discover what craft, farmers’ and country markets are on nearby. It offers information on where the markets are located, what times they run, and also how they rate amongst market-goers. myMarkets Vic is available now on the App Store.
Other innovative solutions awarded prizes include:
- Youth: First prize – Stop Crime – iPhone app that securely communicates with Crime Stoppers
- Youth: Second prize – Metropolitan Trains – Windows Mobile app to help commuters manage their train commute
- Sustainability Victoria Award – myEnviroHouse – allows users to add sustainable products to their homes to calculate how much they can save money, water or reduce carbon emissions
- Popular choice – Remind Anyway – mobile and web tools to help users remember their to-do list based on GPS location and an alert system
- Overall idea winner – Disability Access Information Victoria – tool that brings together information regarding disability access to buildings, transport systems and tourism areas
More information and the full list of winners can be found here.