Tasket is a visually immersive web app that engages volunteers in performing tiny tasks for a cause. It's a "micro-volunteering" task management tool and lets people create tasks that need doing, allows others to claim those tasks and helps everyone track the progress of the community.
The initial prototype (see below) was created at the DotGovLabs/ Rewired State developer weekend. It focussed on the needs of carers and the many small tasks that they need to do each week. It showed how their friends, family and neighbours could assist, by removing some of the burden.
The first production version of Tasket is as the web app "BrightWorks" (see below), for the not-for-profit company, Bright One. BrightWorks enables volunteers to engage with projects for charities and third sector organisations, helping them to train and gain skills, and to work together as a cohesive community. The web app helps to maximise the output from a dispersed crowd of individuals.
Tasket incorporates a light layer of game dynamics. It keeps track of the number of the tasks and total hours that a person has invested in the community. The projects and tasks are visualised such that they rise up the screen, as successive tasks are completed and the projects are unburdened. There are a few protocols to the system, e.g. there is a time limit to complete a task, the system emphasises small tasks over big ones, and so on.
In future, we will add analaytics and visualisations to demonstrate the vitality of the community and its members, and to expose the networks that emerge when a crowd of individuals become connected via their tasks and projects.
Open source and sustainability
Tasket is open source software (with the permissive "MIT" license). Its development will support projects around the world for free and whenever the codebase is improved, those improvements will benefit everyone using the software. Its development will be sustained via bespoke customisations for organisations, and as a hosted "freemium" service for individuals and groups.
Carers: Individuals getting help
There are 6 million carers in the UK (that's one in ten). Many suffer from being overburdened, isolated and stressed. Poor health and depression can often result. We believe that, if carers could receive some help with just the little things in their daily lives, the result could be a big improvement in their quality of life.
Our 24-hour prototype shows how Tasket could be used to let carers add tiny tasks, such as collecting groceries or putting out the rubbish, and allows friends, family or neighbours to complete those tasks.
The prototype won the Government "Carers" category at the DotGovLabs event.
We would like to develop Tasket further so that it fully meets the needs of carers and helps them in their daily lives.
You can see the prototype here: dharmafly.com/tasket-carers-prototype/
(Note, this has only been tested in Google Chrome and Firefox 4 - it will almost certainly blow up in other browsers)
BrightWorks: A group of volunteers
Bright One is an ethical PR company. They provide a specialist, low-cost service for social good organisations, by connecting student volunteers with expert mentors. They have been extremely successful, and have too many volunteers waiting to get involved, and too many charities wanting to sign up. To help solve these problems, we created the web app "BrightWorks", which the core Tasket application plus a thin layer of bespoke design. The first version of the app launched at the end of June 2011.
You can see BrightWorks at: brightworks.me
(Note, this version requires Google Chrome, Firefox 4 or Internet Explorer 9 - it uses drawing technology that is too advanced for older browsers).
You can have a play in the sandpit of a generic Tasket installation at: tasket.dharmafly.com
- Django (as a JSON API)
- Force-directed physics
github.com/dharmafly/tasket (MIT license)
Ideas for taking this project forward
Seed funding, to reach an early beta for use by beta users.
Create a hosted service, to administer your own community's taskboard (i.e. not just for carers).
Data visualisation and analytics on the productivity of the community.
Emergent networks of people and projects.
Estimated costs for taking this project forward
£5000 (or £100,000 or anything in between)
About the data used for this project
Twitter: @premasagar @symroe
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