Today, Expert Labs is proud to announce our first major technology initiative. As the White House recently announced, the President has set about identifying a list of the Grand Challenges facing us in the 21st century, in the realms of health, clean energy, national security, and education, as part of his Strategy for American Innovation. Expert Labs will be working to create technology platform to help refine this list of challenges, identify additional challenges, and to discover which leaders and communities will help address these challenges.
As we've said before, businesses have already found the benefits of crowdsourcing questions and issues to communities of customers or partners. We think that same technique of casting a wide net using the open technologies of the social web will be an extraordinarily powerful improvement to the effort to solve these great scientific and technological challenges facing society.
To that end, we're proud to announce that highly-respected author, blogger, broadcaster and programmer Gina Trapani has been named Project Director to lead the technology effort at Expert Labs in support of the Grand Challenges initiative. Her platform ThinkTank is already a popular open source application for performing key crowdsourcing tasks. By sponsoring the platform, we hope to encourage its maturation into a robust tool appropriate for use in this effort and many others to come.
Aside from the technological efforts we're investing in, we're extremely interested in sharing the best practices on attracting and encouraging a community of experts to respond to an initiative as ambitious as Grand Challenges. To that end, we'll also be regularly blogging and publishing our findings on what has worked for other analogous efforts, as well as what social and technical decisions we're making in order to encourage participation. We hope our entire community will participate in that effort as well.
For programmers, we've put out a call to join the ThinkTank project. For policy makers, we've begun working to refine the broad questions of the Grand Challenge into specific prompts for action and response. And soon, we'll be going to the scientific and research communities with those specific prompts, with the goal of encouraging responses to the Grand Challenges Request for Information.
In support of this new Expert Labs announcement, both Director Anil Dash and Project Director Gina Trapani will be at the AAAS Annual Meeting in San Diego this week.