There was an article in The Times newspaper not long ago which reported on the gradual distancing from nature by today’s youngsters, in part because of their obsession with smartphone usage. Back in the old days we used to play outside, in nature often. Nowadays youngsters are glued to their smartphones. They interact with the ether and not with the smells, sounds and sights of beautiful nature.
Because screen time is blamed for the decline in children’s knowledge of nature, and new smart phone app has been created by the World Wide Fund for Nature to encourage young people to go outside and discover what’s out there, near their home, on the doorstep.
It is called the “Seek” app. It has been created with iNatureList. This is an online community of nature enthusiasts. The app uses image recognition and augmented reality to recognise flora and fauna.
Users are challenged to discover 10 living species near their home or to capture species in a food chain. Users can also submit their discoveries to a global biodiversity database. This will help scientists understand better biodiversity across the planet and map it more accurately.
The app is in line with the feelings of many youngsters about climate change. It is today’s young people who are driving an awareness to climate change, trying to urge the adults to do something about it.
“Young people are increasingly demanding that our leaders take action to protect our planet. Resources like the Seek app are vital to help them learn more about the wonders of our natural world and be part of scientific efforts to understand the impact we are having.”-Colin Butterfield from the World Wildlife Fund.
The app will be rolled out in schools and it comes at a time when it’s been said that the planet is going through a wildlife extinction phase with many species being made extinct by human excesses and abuses of nature and the planet itself.