CrowdHydrology noticed by industry publication, Environmental Monitor.
Chris Lowry’s idea was simple: set up staff gauges on local streams and leave a sign requesting passersby read the water level and text the data to a phone number. Data from text messages would be recorded and then posted to a website for public use.
It was the beginning of CrowdHydrology, a crowdsourcing project that recently gained U.S. Geological Survey support for expansion into several Midwest states. Though it won’t generate as much data as official USGS stream gauges, the project will generate data points that supplement those lost from official gauges shut down following federal budget cuts.