Pervasive education systems can help prisoners. Can they not help the homeless?

http://www.npr.org/2011/05/01/135841052/sheriffs-program-teaches-prisoners-to-get-out-of-jail

This article speaks to recent efforts made to introduce education to incarcerated persons in the hopes that they may be more able to function in society upon release from prison. The notion of an “embedded” education system can be transferred to the arena of homelessness by analysis of technologies that could be placed in transitional housing facilities and geared toward providing occupants with life and job skills.

This documentary details the struggles many veterans face as they come home from war to less than a hero’s welcome, at times. Many homeless veterans occupy shelters and are, it would seem, only a small break away from gainful and productive re-integration into society. The potential impact of technology/information access on these populations will be studied in detail, from the perspective of in-home hardware/software solutions.

http://www.gvu.gatech.edu/node/4791

Thorough research has been done on ways that mobile technology could be used to positively change the quality of life for some of Atlanta’s marginalized populations. Proposed research would represent an extension of this idea, providing various technologies that would be based in the home as opposed to the homeless shelter.

http://www.npr.org/2011/03/07/134002013/ending-homelessness-a-model-that-just-might-work

This story details a non-profit organization that turns unused housing structures into space for urban homeless persons. One extension on this could be paired with a potential solution to another local problem: the onslaught of local area foreclosures.

Write up as follows:

A secondary idea not mentioned above involves remote property management technologies/services/systems that bridge the gap between homeless populations (specifically homeless veterans) and houses left vacant due to foreclosure as a result of the recent financial crisis.
Transitional housing programs could be setup that connect Real Estate Owned by banks (REO properties), local area housing shelters, and the various resources available to both.

An example “system” is Community LandLink, a web-based resource whereby REO’s could be listed and described, and VA representatives could temporarily (1-2 months) house veterans without adequate housing. The houses would be rented with PC’s and internet access, allowing much of the same benefits (and subsequent analysis) described in the “in-home-education” idea. In addition to meeting the educational and developmental requirements mentioned, residents would also agree to provide labor to clean up/improve the subject property, as well as other area properties or others owned by the bank.

This simultaneously addresses two huge issues facing our nation as a whole, and the Atlanta region in particular.

This has implications in ubiquitous computing, educational technology, and other HCC arenas (references forthcoming).

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