NASA Invites You to Build a Smartwatch App For Astronauts

But today it is casting its net wider in the hope of finding a designer for a smartwatch app that will be used by astronauts aboard the worldwide Space Station (ISS). On his left arm is strapped an Omega Speedmaster.


In a post on the Freelancer website, NASA says, “We (NASA) are concerned in the emerging world of smartwatch technology and are seeing to leverage this technology to create a smartwatch app that could be useful to astronauts”.

Crew Timeline Application: Will display an agenda view of the timeline as well as a way to easily navigate to next day in the past or future, now viewed on iPad or Laptop. The hardware reference for the contest is the Samsung Gear 2, and the contest description notes that “innovative representations data displayed on a Smartwatch is highly encouraged”. Either way if you have an idea of what a good astronaut smartwatch will be like, head on over to Freelancer for the details where the victor will earn themselves $1,500. Numerous functions described above are now carried out on laptops and iPads. NASA is interested in working with the 16 million-strong community to “contribute to the efforts of space exploration”. It goes on to describe the kinds of daily activites the app would be used for.

Along with a “Timers” app, which would enable astronauts to set a timer for a procedure or until the next activity, the software should also include a “Caution & Warnings” app to include colour-coded warnings of any potential hazards.

All these functions should be available in just one app and should direct the astronaut’s attention to the information they need.

Participants don’t actually have to make the app. Instead, they are tasked with designing the app’s user interface, presenting the finished work in the form of image files.


NASA is showing its interest in smartwatches, and trying to court designers with an app-interface challenge.

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