With the preeminence of big data and analytics, it was only a matter of time before consumers started taking advantage of its capabilities. FallingFruit.Org takes advantage of big data, analytics and the masses to create a compelling nonprofit business.

The organization uses a massive open map with open source code, which allows any individual worldwide to download it and add his/her contribution. The company hopes to quantify the natural resources offered around the globe and assist people in developing meaningful relationships by foraging for food.

This entrepreneurial endeavor harnesses the power and information of the masses in attempting to solve a world problem in the form of food shortages and hunger. The map starts out with at a global view, with large aggregations of data points in large areas, as exhibited below.

Falling Fruit

This gives the large overview of where free food sources are located. However, at this point, the user can drill down to their home state, their home town and even their street. At the city level, the data points become individual locations, with a pop up that describes the type of food available at that location.

FallingFruit2

The site currently has over 780,000 locations added by its users. This content is continually growing and is being embraced by more and more users. While this project is in the beginning stages, we hope to see it expand to cover even more sources. Although a primary objective is to provide people the resources and inspiration to forage for food, with enough data points, it could become a viable tool in assisting people with finding much needed free food. This is just another way that consumers are personally incorporating big data and analytics into their everyday lives.

By: Sarah Wright