Get PSI reading at a glance with phone app

SINGAPORE - Some technologically savvy people have put their skills to good use by giving a little more clarity about the haze.

A team of developers has created a smartphone app called SG PSI, which tells users at one glance what the current Pollutant Standards Index (PSI) reading is. This saves people the hassle of having to constantly refresh the National Environment Agency's (NEA) website for updates.

SG PSI is available only for smartphones on the Android platform.

A version is being approved by Apple for iPhones.

"The information people want is buried too deep on the NEA website. There should be an app for us to easily monitor the haze," said Mr Cia Zhi Kai, 26, who created the app with three other Indonesians and a Vietnamese.

The five work for yet-to-beregistered local start-up Dashsell, which is creating a dashboard to help users manage the things they sell online.

SG PSI has garnered more than 30,000 downloads since it was released last Thursday.

The app draws information from NEA's website, which is updated hourly and provides an average of the most recent threehour PSI readings.

On the app, the PSI is displayed in a big font for easy viewing, while the background colour changes gradually from green to red to reflect air quality. Historical hourly PSI information for the past 24 hours is also displayed.

This feature is handy for many users like business development manager Heng Wai Keong, 38.

"You can have a better feel of whether the haze is getting better or worse," he said.

Another group is also making use of air quality information to create user-friendly content.

On VslashR.com, there is a data visualisation of PSI readings from last Monday in an interactive colour-coded chart. At a glance, users can tell which are the days with the highest or lowest readings, and zoom in for more detailed information.

"We want to answer questions like, 'Do we get more haze in the day or at night?' " said website co-founder Chan Chi-loong, 36.

The site also has similar charts showing Singapore's dengue clusters and the local population.


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