The great thing about the near-ubquitousness of smartphones is their capacity to educate us in all sorts of interesting, unexpected ways. They can connect us to reams of data and information, tell us where we are with pin-point accuracy, and connect us with people near and far.
The Welcome to Country app, by developer Tyson Mowarin, is a great example of using modern technology to keep old knowledge alive, and bring it to a wider audience. By linking into the phone’s GPS, Welcome to Country sends a notification to your phone, telling you the indigineous nation you’re now crossing into – and giving you a literal welcome from one of the traditional owners.
Right now, as NITV reports, the app only features 40 nations, but the plan is to have the app eventually list the whole 500 or so nations that existed before white settlement.
“What I want people to learn, Indigenous and non-Indigenous, is to… acknowledge and recognise that before settlement there was almost five hundred nations in Australia and these five hundred nations still exist,” Mr Mowarin told NITV News.
The app is available now, for free, on iTunes.